The Integrative Wildlife Conservation lab at Trent University is initiating a PhD project on the movement and habitat dynamics of snowshoe hares at Kluane Lake, Yukon. Snowshoe hares have been studied for >30 years on-site, and we are launching an assessment of the role of food and cover on hare movements and population dynamics. Using GPS telemetry and accelerometry on adult hares, combined with remote sensing technologies identifying structural cover and food patches on the landscape, we will evaluate spatially-explicit hare movement and behaviour in relation to environmental risks (predation) and rewards (nutrition). The work may also involve assessing hare movement ecology in the context of energy landscapes that vary dynamically with accumulation/melt of snow in winter, and the implications of climate change on these dynamics. Our team has worked on hares and their main predators, Canada lynx, for many years at Kluane, so there is already a large dataset available to support the research. Because hare populations at Kluane exhibit 10-year population cycles, this project also presents a unique opportunity to assess the dynamic relationship between population density and individual behaviour. The PhD student will have the opportunity to develop additional research questions within the scope of the broader project.
Successful candidates will have an MSc in Ecology, Conservation Biology, or related field, demonstrated evidence of peer-reviewed publications, strong field and quantitative skills, and an interest in working collaboratively within a large and diverse research group. Additional desirable skills include animal handling, GPS telemetry, remote sensing and GIS analysis, and working in remote field conditions, including during winter. For additional details, see www.dennismurray.ca.
To apply, send a cover letter, curriculum vitae, unofficial academic transcript, and contact information for 3 references to: Dennis Murray (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The position will be filled as soon as a suitable candidate is found.