We have initiated large-scale research projects in the southern Red Desert and Sierra Madre region of Wyoming with two major objectives relative to greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) ecology and management. The first (and primary for this search) investigation is on winter habitat use and management guidelines for winter concentration areas. A second, related investigation focuses on resource selection overlap between sage-grouse and co-occurring species, namely wild horses, pronghorn (Antilocapra americana), and sharp-tailed grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus). We are seeking a motivated and experienced Master of Science (MS) student to collect data and complete original research as part of this larger project. The original research developed is flexible to the ingenuity of the successful applicant, but should be related to the project’s overall objectives. This research will collect data from 50 female sage-grouse marked with GPS transmitters that collect multiple locations/day in southern Carbon and Sweetwater Counties over a minimum of two years.
Because this research is part of larger projects it will be completed in collaboration with two postdoctoral research associates and two PhD students. Field work for this project will likely entail capturing and processing sage-grouse, radio-tracking, monitoring nests and broods, microhabitat vegetation sampling, winter habitat collection, as well as supervising a field technician in these duties. Field work will also require working under harsh weather conditions, safely operating 4WD trucks and ATVs, working long hours with highly variable work schedules (including night-time hours), and may require camping. This position has a start date in spring 2019 at the beginning of the first field season as a lead field technician. Then the successful applicant will start an MS program in fall 2019 that will require two years of teaching assistantship (AY 2019/2020 and AY 2020/2021) in the Department of Ecosystem Science and Management. The successful applicant will be enrolled in the MS program in Rangeland Ecology and Watershed Management (http://www.uwyo.edu/esm/graduate/prospective/majors/rangeland.html) through the Department of Ecosystem Science and Management, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, at the University of Wyoming and will be expected to compile progress reports, publish manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals, and present findings to lay and scientific audiences. The student must communicate effectively with personnel from sponsoring agencies (e.g., Bureau of Land Management, Wyoming Game and Fish Department) and private landowners. Tuition and fees, health insurance, and an annual stipend are provided for a total annual support package of $25,888 ($16,104 annual stipend).
Qualifications include a BS degree in the biological, ecological, or natural resource sciences, or other closely related field; relevant research experience; an ability to work long hours; complete rigorous field work; and possess excellent written and oral communication skills. A GPA of ≥3.3, GRE of ≥300 combined verbal and quantitative, and minimum GRE of 4.0 for analytical writing will be viewed highly. Applicants with quantitative and spatial skills will also be viewed highly.
Please apply by emailing a SINGLE PDF file that includes a cover letter, CV, minimum of 3 references, unofficial transcripts, and a copy of your GRE test taker score report to Dr. Jeff Beck (email@example.com) and Dr. Aaron Pratt (firstname.lastname@example.org). After initial screening, suitable candidates will be invited to write, and ultimately present, a one-page synopsis of a potential research idea for this project that is feasible and that you would be interested to form one of the chapters in your thesis.