Pollinator Best Management Practices in Wetlands and Agricultural Lands in Mississippi

Mississippi State University/USDA-ARS
Western Mississippi (field sites)
Job Category
Graduate Assistantships
$23,500 annually (3.5 years duration). Health insurance provided and non-resident tuition waived.
Start Date
Last Date to Apply
The graduate student selected will conduct research designed to address two issues: 1) How wetlands and associated lands managed for waterfowl hunting or other purposes affect ground-nesting native bees, and 2) how native bees may be impacted by red imported fire ants (RIFA). The work is of experimental nature and involves combinations of land and water manipulation treatments and general wetland management practices at approximately 12 independent sites. The work also involves sampling bees and other insects with a combination of techniques including bee bowls, malaise traps, and pitfall traps. The successful candidate will pursue a PhD degree in the Department of Wildlife, Fisheries & Aquaculture, Mississippi State University. Dr. Brian Davis (MSU) will serve as primary advisor. Collaborators include Dr. Katherine Parys, USDA-ARS, Pollinator Health in Southern Crop Ecosystems Research Unit (Stoneville, MS). The candidate will have use of newly renovated state-of-the-art laboratory facilities in the Stoneville complex (Dr. Parys). Other collaborative opportunities exist both at MSU and the USDA.
The successful candidate will have an interest/passion for native bee communities, wetlands and associated habitats, ecology & management, and the ability to work collaboratively and independently. Critical attributes include: 1) Self-motivation and the ability to work in hot and humid and sometimes remote field conditions; 2) interest in and dedication to preparing specimens and identifying bees in a laboratory; and 3) publishing scientific findings. Please do not apply if you are not capable/motivated in all 3 phases. Other opportunities include presentations at professional conferences, assisting with other graduate projects, providing teaching lectures or labs, and other duties as assigned or desired by the candidate. Ample opportunity exists to work on previously collected native bee data from this region for additional publications. Based on the motivation of the candidate, this project will give you significant opportunity to ultimately enhance your CV through journal papers and conferences. M.S. in entomology, wildlife science, wetland or other ecology, or closely related field. A strong work ethic and excellent verbal and written communication skills. Candidate must have a minimum 3.0 GPA in their MS coursework. NOTE: START DATE is negotiable! When emailing, please include both Drs. Davis and Parys (see below).
Contact Person
Drs. Brian Davis and Katherine Parys; katherine.parys@usda.gov
Contact Phone
662-325-4790 (Davis)
Contact eMail
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