PhD position in Conservation / Ecology – University of Florida

Agency
University of Florida
Location
Gainesville, Florida
Job Category
Graduate Assistantships
Salary
TBD
Start Date
01/01/2021
Last Date to Apply
09/01/2020
Website
https://www.schefferslab.com
Description
We are seeking a highly motivated Ph.D. student to start at the University of Florida in Spring 2021. This is a unique opportunity for a student to choose from a diversity of ongoing research projects in the global change and ecology lab of Dr. Brett Scheffers (www.schefferslab.com) and the landscape ecology lab of Dr. Robert Fletcher (www.fletcherlab.com). Available research projects are: 1) Biogeography and elevation gradients; tap into a long-term study on the biogeographic patterns and conservation status of birds in the Rocky Mountain region of Montana and Idaho (see, e.g., McCarthy et al 2011); 2) Tropical ecology of Madagascar; study the biodiversity of rainforest canopies with a focus on the vertical stratification, ecophysiology, and behavioral experimentation of frogs and reptiles in Madagascar (see, e.g., Basham et al 2019, Seidl et al 2020); 3) Experimental landscape ecology; investigate the role of habitat loss, habitat fragmentation, and matrix quality on the population and community dynamics of insect herbivores using a prickly-pear cactus and their associated species as a model system (see, e.g., Fletcher et al. 2011, 2013, 2014); 4) Tropical ecology of Panama and Colombia; study the distributions of butterflies, birds, and/or frogs, both vertically (within rainforests) and horizontally (across landscapes/elevation) (see, e.g., Basham and Scheffers 2020). 5) If you have an idea for an exciting theme of research that falls within the fields of biogeography, ecophysiology, climate change, macro ‘big data’ ecology, landscape ecology or some other ecological field; we encourage you to contact us. Preferred applicants will be highly motivated and have a background in ecology, ornithology, herpetology, entomology, or other relevant ecological fields. Prior publication experience is highly desirable. Extensive field experience, strong quantitative skills, and an ability to work well both independently and as part of a diverse team are essential for this position. Students with strong initiative and desire to carve out their own research questions are highly encouraged to apply. In a single .pdf file, interested students should send (1) a letter stating your background and research interests and how they align with the Scheffers/Fletcher research program, and your reasons for pursuing a graduate degree, (2) a description of the research projects you are most interested in and why, (3) Curriculum Vitae, and (4) contact information for three references by email to Dr. Brett Scheffers (email: brett.scheffers@ufl.edu). In the subject line of your email should read “PhD Position Scheffers/Fletcher”, followed by your name. Deadline: Review of submitted materials will begin immediately Competitive stipend and health benefits are included. Funding is available for up to 4 years with the possibility of a 5th year via UF fellowship programs. The successful student will be part of the Graduate Programs in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation and the School of Natural Resources and the Environment Information about the University of Florida: The University of Florida is a premiere research institution, known for research excellence and boasting some of the nation’s most highly regarded STEM programs. UF is ranked 7th in the nation’s best public institutions, and, in the natural sciences, UF is known for its tropical ecology program and is ranked as the nation’s #1 program for Wildlife, Fish and Wildlands Science and Management. UF’s international focus brings a diverse perspective to its research, which fosters a strongly collaborative and interdisciplinary atmosphere, making it one of the most desirable universities for graduate research. Information about Gainesville, Florida: Situated in the rolling countryside of north central Florida, Gainesville is much more than a stereotypical college town. Home of the University of Florida, seat of Alachua County’s government and the region’s commercial hub, Gainesville is dynamic, environmentally conscious and culturally diverse. The University’s strong international program contributes to Gainesville’s 99,000+ population, generating a welcoming, multi-cultural atmosphere. Additionally, the natural beauty, temperate/sub-tropical climate, proximity to beaches, and civic amenities make Gainesville a pleasant and interesting place in which to learn and to live. For these reasons, Gainesville has been ranked as one of the USA’s best cities to live in. Ecologically, Florida boasts a diversity of fauna and flora common to both southern temperate and subtropical climates and is replete with springs, rivers, backwater streams, lakes, freshwater and saltwater marshes, mangrove fringes, cypress swamps, hardwood hammocks, sandhills, scrub, pine flatwoods, and rangeland. Nested between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, Florida has more than 2,000 kilometers of coastal beaches and estuaries—many within a short day’s trip from Gainesville. Special features include the Florida Keys, which constitute an archipelago of picturesque subtropical islands, and the unique Everglades, or “river of grass,” which sprawls across the vast southern peninsula.
Qualifications
Preferred applicants will be highly motivated and have a background in ecology, ornithology, herpetology, entomology, or other relevant ecological fields. Prior publication experience is highly desirable. Extensive field experience, strong quantitative skills, and an ability to work well both independently and as part of a diverse team are essential for this position.
Contact Person
Brett Scheffers
Contact eMail
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