PhD – Environmental variability and population dynamics of kangaroos.

We are looking for a motivated and capable student, with a keen interest in both population dynamics and fieldwork, for a PhD program on the population dynamics of Eastern Grey Kangaroos. The selected candidate will build upon an existing 10 years of population estimates and individually-based data on survival, growth and reproduction of over 1000 kangaroos in a population in Victoria. The ideal candidate will have a strong academic record and an interest in both fundamental and applied aspects of population dynamics in a highly variable environment. Previous research experience and demonstrated ability to do fieldwork are essential. Candidates who have published previous research and are competitive for scholarships will be preferred. The program will be co-supervised by Marco Festa-Bianchet at the Université de Sherbrooke, Richard Duncan at the University of Canberra and Dave Forsyth at New South Wales Department of Primary Industries.

The program will involve a detailed quantification of the drivers of population change over time, including weather, vegetation productivity and population density. The data will allow a detailed decomposition of changes in population size into effects of reproduction, age- and sex-specific survival, and possibly cohort effects.

The successful candidate may register either at the Université de Sherbrooke in Canada or the University of Canberra in Australia. The PhD will involve an internship at either the Canadian or Australian institution and at least two additional seasons of fieldwork, leading to an overall data base spanning at least 12 years. Funding for research costs is available. The successful candidate will either apply for a scholarship at the University of Canberra, have an independent scholarship, or be funded by a research grant at the Université de Sherbrooke. For further information, contact Marco Festa-Bianchet at m.festa@USherbrooke.ca or Richard Duncan at Richard.Duncan@canberra.edu.au

Information on the kangaroo research and previous publications are available at http://marco.recherche.usherbrooke.ca/marco.htm

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