Graduate Opportunity (PhD) Habitat and Foraging Ecology of Moose across Disturbed Landscapes

We are recruiting a PhD student to investigate the habitat and foraging ecology of moose across central British Columbia, Canada. The work will focus on the response of moose to broad-scale and rapid salvage harvest of lodgepole pine. The study will be conducted in the John Prince Research Forest (http://www.jprf.ca/research/post/moose-habitat-selection-movement-ecology-and-survival) where there has been stable levels of forest harvest and the surrounding landscape that has been the focus of salvage harvest.

There is considerable flexibility in research question and design, but we anticipate methods that potentially employ field-based analyses of recently deployed high-frequency GPS collars, 4 years of broader-scale GPScollar data, and 3 years of camera-trap data. The study area has Lidar derived forest/cover attributes and there is an effort to monitor wolves. We expect the dissertation to have an applied focus, with application of findings to the development or improvement of forest management practices that enhance moose populations.

The qualified student will attend classes at the Prince George campus of the University of Northern BC. UNBC is a small, but dynamic research intensive university (www.unbc.ca). The Prince George area offers abundant outdoor recreation activities. Please see our website for more information on the Natural Resources and Environmental Studies Graduate Program including degree requirements and expectations (www.unbc.ca/nres/). Research activities will be conducted at the John Prince Research Forest.

Qualifications: This is a challenging, but rewarding project requiring a range of interests and aptitudes. Preferably, the successful applicant will have a degree in biology or ecology. The student should be willing to work in a collaborative environment with multiple research partners. Demonstration of field-based competencies (e.g., GPS operation, compassing, backcountry safety/skills) is an asset as well as a desire to get dirty and potentially work long hours. Also, the student should have a keen interest in quantitative ecology, including the development of species distribution models and the analysis of camera-trap data. The successful student should be prepared to spend a portion of the summer working at the study site near Fort St. James, British Columbia with a program start date of September 2019. We offer a competitive stipend ($22,000/year for 3 years) and funding to support field and lab activities.

For further information please contact Dr. Chris Johnson, (johnsoch@unbc.ca; 1-250-960-5357; http://web.unbc.ca/~johnsoch).

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