A graduate assistantship (M.S.) is available in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware starting in July 2021. The research will focus on investigating sika deer population ecology in eastern Maryland and Delaware. The student will use camera traps to document the presence/absence of sika deer. These data will be used to develop an occupancy model for sika deer within their know range. The student will then use the model to extrapolate outside the know range to locate possible occupied habitat patches. In the final field season, the student will camera trap in areas classified as high probability of occupancy to locate new occupied areas. A second part of the project is a pilot study of reproductive ecology. The student will capture and mark adult females with GPS collars and vaginal implant transmitters. These transmitters will be used to locate and capture the calves, which will be marked with radio collars. These data will be used to develop a larger project on reproductive ecology of sika deer. The student will be responsible for coordinating and conducting fieldwork associated with the project. The selected candidate will also be responsible for data entry and analysis, and writing reports. Our goal will be to provide information to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and the Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife to better manage sika deer populations. The student will be part of a dynamic research team investigating many facets of deer, wild turkey, and predator ecology and management. The development of additional research objectives by the student will be encouraged.
I am seeking a highly motivated and qualified student interested in pursuing a M.S. in Wildlife Ecology. To be considered, applicants must have a B.S. degree in wildlife ecology or closely related discipline. Minimum requirements are an undergraduate GPA of 3.0. The GRE is not required. Individuals with deer capture and handling and remote camera experience are preferred. Pertinent field, statistical, and computer experience and skills are desirable, especially in ArcGIS, Excel, R, and Word. The student must be reliable, punctual, willing to work long hours in difficult terrain, willing to work with and supervise technicians, and maintain working relationships with private landowners and state biologists. The student must have a valid driver’s license and a vehicle. Applicants should email a cover letter outlining their qualifications for the project, resume/CV, unofficial transcript(s), and 3 references as a single pdf document.