The Avian Ecology Program at Archbold Biological Station is seeking four-five interns for approximately six months to assist with long-term demography research on the Federally Threatened Florida Scrub-Jay. Two positions start mid-January 2022 and run through July 2022 and the other positions start mid-March 2022 and run through September 2022. Starting and ending dates can be flexible and may be staggered as per Archbold’s COVID policies. Interns will be supervised by Dr. Reed Bowman in a dynamic lab with one post-doctoral assistant research biologist, four research assistants, two graduate students, and four seasonal technicians. Archbold and the Avian Ecology Lab conduct conservation research projects throughout the state of Florida, including work conducted on operational cattle ranches and military bases.
These positions are for our long-term research on the demography, ecology, behavior, and conservation of the Federally Threatened Florida Scrub-Jay. Interns contribute to several aspects of this research, but their primary duties include:
• Searching for and monitoring nests
• Conducting monthly censuses of color-banded birds
• Habituating birds for subsequent trapping
• Bleeding adult and nestling birds
• Processing blood samples
• Conducting oak acorn surveys
• Data entry
• In addition, interns may assist in surveys of jay populations at other sites, mapping jay territories, and helping with prescribed fires
• Experience life at a biological research station in a collaborative environment
• Assist with long-term demography research of a Threatened species
• Work 20 hours per week assisting with field and lab projects, typically but not always Monday – Friday. Each intern will have the opportunity to manage various aspects of our day-to-day work.
• Dedicate remaining time to designing and implementing an independent research project that fits within our research program, with a report and presentation at the end of the internship
• Interns will be trained in every aspect of scientific research, from project choice, experimental design, and statistical analysis to oral and written presentations. This will prepare interns for graduate school and/or higher-level report writing required by other agencies. Some previous interns have published their projects in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
• Opportunity to learn trapping, handling, and bleeding skills with avian species
• Gain experience in conservation biology
• Opportunities to contribute to conservation education and popular science writing to further conservation goals
• Shared lodging at Archbold Biological Station
• Weekly stipend of $185
• Additional $60 per week food allowance while Station’s Dining Room is closed due to Covid-19. Once our kitchen facilities are reopened, we will provide breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday.
This position is ideal for students with undergraduate degrees contemplating graduate school. Applicants should be interested in birds, ecology and evolution, natural history, and preparing themselves for graduate school.
• A Bachelor’s degree in Biology, Ecology, Wildlife Science, or a related field
• Field experience outside of coursework; however, we provide training for all interns.
• Experience resighting color banded birds, finding and monitoring nests, conducting animal surveys, vegetation sampling, and using a compass and GPS is preferred, but we do hire interns that have yet to learn those skills
• Attention to detail with respect to following sampling protocols and managing data
• Tolerance for biting insects, early mornings, and high heat/humidity
• Motivation and enthusiasm about living and working in a rural field-station setting
• Respect for others, as interns will share lodging with other interns
To apply, please fill out this Google form: https://forms.gle/Np6vgQnt8aadedRK6
The form will ask you to upload the following in a single pdf titled with your surname:
• A cover letter outlining experience relevant to the job responsibilities described, and how you believe an internship in our lab will help you achieve your goals
• A CV
• Unofficial transcripts
• The names and contact information of three references
For questions, please contact Meredith Heather (avianecology7 AT archbold-station.org) and Dr. Reed Bowman (rbowman AT archbold-station.org). We will start reviewing applications after the deadline on October 31, 2021. Those without access to email may mail their applications to The Avian Ecology Program, Archbold Biological Station, 123 Main Dr. Venus, FL 33960; (PH: 863-659-4825). Please note that we are unable to provide international applicants with a work visa.
As ecologists, we know the importance of diversity and encourage individuals belonging to groups under-represented in ecology to apply.