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Undergrad Research Opportunities 1/5/17

1) Volunteer Field assistant for research on small mammals and plague

Agency: Idaho Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, University of Idaho
Location:Adams County, Idaho
Job Category:Temporary/Seasonal Positions
Salary:$45/day per diem plus free housing Start Date:04/05/2017
Last Date to Apply: 1/16/2017 website:

Description The northern Idaho ground squirrel (Urocitellus brunneus) is federally threatened under ESA. We are using field experiments to assess the presence and effects that plague may have on northern Idaho ground squirrel populations and other small mammals associated with them.

We capture and mark ground squirrels using PIT tags and ear tags from April through August.  We compare demographic parameters among treatments, including capture-recapture analyses to assess population attributes (e.g., survival rates).  We anesthetize small mammals (Columbian ground squirrels, northern Idaho ground squirrels, chipmunks, and mice) to collect fleas (a plague vector).

Housing will be provided for the applicant during the field season. Field housing may be rustic.  Housing may be a camp trailer, a cabin, or a wall tent.  Applicants must be willing to live for 5 months without daily phone and email access.  Field work will include various types of weather conditions (rain, snow, and heat), long hours, odd schedules, and physical work.  We will provide a vehicle for work to transport technicians between housing and the field sites.

Skills you will acquire: • Trapping, handling, and processing small mammals (northern Idaho ground squirrels, Columbian ground squirrels, chipmunks, and mice) • Use of anesthesia in the field • Experience working with a listed species

Qualifications • Demonstrated oral and written communication skills • Demonstrated ability to work both independently and within a group setting • Previous experience hiking/camping • Excellent skills in time and data organization/management • Must be in good physical condition and have the ability to walk on uneven terrain throughout the day and carry heavy traps for short distances (less than 1 mile) • Must have a valid US driving license • Must be a US citizen or possess a valid US green card • Must be available for employment by 5 April 2017 through 15 August 2017

Apply by sending a cover letter, CV, copy of college transcripts (unofficial are ok), and the email and phone numbers for at least three references in one document (PDF or Word) to Amanda Goldberg ( . Please write “plague volunteer” in the subject line.

2) Ecology REU opportunity at Miami University

Miami University (in Oxford, OH) is excited to announce that we are still accepting applications to our Research Experience for Undergraduates Program. The program is focused on The Ecology of Human Dominated Landscapes. We would appreciate it if you could distribute this e-mail to anyone that might be interested and encourage your students to visit our website and apply. Below there is a short synopsis of the program activities and contact information for students that may be interested in the program.

Undergraduate students accepted into the program will: • Conduct an independent research project with a faculty mentor at Miami University. Research opportunities are available in the lab or field in aquatic or terrestrial environments, • Discuss current literature related to their projects with faculty mentors and student peers in clusters related to their project. • Attend team-building field trips around the regional Midwest. • Take short courses on ethics and professions in ecology and environmental science, and interact with seminars by guest speakers. • Participate in field trips illustrating the natural history of Southwestern Ohio.

For more information about our program please visit our website at: Click on the Application tab at the top of the page and follow the instructions to apply. Please contact Patrick Garrett at with any problems, questions, or concerns you may have about our program or the application process.

3) Job posting: Arizona Mud Turtle Technician

American Turtle Observatory (ATO; and Antioch University New England seek a Field Technician to study the ecology and seasonal behavior of Arizona Mud Turtles (Kinosternon arizonense), a monsoon-adapted species, in southern Arizona during the summer of 2017. This position will involve both field and office responsibilities and will run from May 15 – September 15, 2017 (start and end dates are negotiable).

Location: Southern Arizona, USA Website: Salary: $1000 monthly stipend Start Date: May 15, 2017 End Date: September 15, 2017 Last Date to Apply: January 27, 2017 Application Materials: email a brief (<1 page) cover letter, resume, and contact information for three references as a single Word or PDF document Contact Person: Liz Willey Contact E-Mail: For more information, visit:

Field responsibilities will involve trapping, seining, and hand- capturing mud turtles in remote environments near the border with Sonora, Mexico; daily radiotelemetry of ten adult Arizona Mud Turtles; entering and proofing all field data on a weekly basis; managing photographs; and following standard decontamination procedures to protect mud turtles as well as Chiricahua Leopard Frogs.

Office responsibilities will require careful data management in Microsoft Excel, ArcGIS, and/or GoogleEarth; coordinating monthly conference calls with project partners; helping to prepare a technical report; preparing a technical assistance handout to improve habitat management for Arizona Mud Turtles.

Qualifications Applicants should be enthusiastic and sociable, enjoy travel, and expect to work long hours in the field in difficult conditions (heat, cold, rain, insects). Applicants should enjoy working independently with multiple days of relative solitude, and be ready to independently prioritize research-related decisions based upon a strong grasp of project objectives. Applicants should also be able to interact in a professional manner by email and phone. Applicants must have a valid driver’s license; access to a personal vehicle in Arizona is preferred. Ideal candidates will be proficient in GPS and compass navigation and be able to interpret topographic maps and aerial photographs. Desired qualifications also include field experience with freshwater turtles in the wild, experience with radio-telemetry, ArcGIS, GoogleEarth, habitat modeling and conservation area planning.

4) Big Cat Research Opportunity in South Africa

Raven Adventures’ is seeking volunteers for the Big Cat Research Project’s 2017 season. Volunteers will spend two weeks in South Africa studying lion, leopard, and cheetah, monitoring population distribution, density, and effects of tourism. This opportunity is open to anyone looking to gain experience in fieldwork and animal behavior research while working in a small group setting. Volunteers should be self-motivated and enthusiastic, working long hours with responsibilities including, but not limited to: collecting behavioral field notes, organizing photographic identification of individual study animals, and general basecamp chores. Volunteer positions are tailored to the learning undergraduate student and no prior experience is necessary. Accommodations will be basic camping. Overall cost is $3,995 per session and includes roundtrip airfare from JFK to Johannesburg, all trip meals, and camping/research equipment.

Please send all inquiries to Sabrina Salome at, and to begin the application process attach a copy of your CV or resume. Four sessions will be run this summer.

5) Interns needed for food web study

Dates:  Late March through early June

Location:  Carrizo Plain National Monument, California (60 miles east of San Luis Obispo)

Duties:  2 interns are needed to conduct a variety of animal surveys as part of a long-term food web study in the Carrizo Plain National Monument. The Carrizo is the largest remnant of the San Joaquin grassland ecosystem and contains many endangered plants and animals. Interns will work on a team of 3-5 people and will conduct a variety of surveys, focusing especially on mark-recapture of endangered kangaroo rats. Mark-recapture surveys of threatened squirrels, visual line transects for reptiles, pitfall trapping for invertebrates, and spotlight surveys for predators and lagomorphs may also be conducted, and team members will help with vegetation sampling. Interns will also take down precipitation plot equipment and assist with other duties as needed.

Requirements:  All applicants must be pursuing or have a bachelor’s degree in the natural sciences and have previous field experience.  Applicants must be able to start work by the last week of March and work through early to mid- June. A strong interest in natural history, conservation, and/or management and a high level of responsibility, organization, and motivation are require.  It is helpful to have PIT tagging experience, small mammal trapping experience, and familiarity with the plants and animals of California.  Must be flexible and live and work well with others in an isolated setting. Applicants must be able to maintain work quality and a positive attitude during challenging field conditions. Applicants must be in good physical condition and experienced with or able to tolerate hot and cold field conditions. Must be able to work long hours and be comfortable working at night. Prefer applicants with experience and strong interest in grassland or desert species.

Work schedule:  Approx. 40 hrs per week, variable throughout season

Compensation:  $600-800/month. Housing is provided at an active research facility on the Monument.

To Apply:  Please email a cover letter, resume, and contact information for 2-3 references as a single Word or PDF attachment to Rachel Endicott at  Please apply by January 27, 2017.

6) Marine science REU at Texas A&M University – Galveston campus

Texas A&M University Galveston invites talented undergraduate students from diverse backgrounds to participate in a 10-week immersive experience in Summer 2017 to conduct semi-independent research that will address the complexities and challenges related to our world’s oceans and coastal environments through OCEANUS (Ocean and Coastal Research Experiences for Undergraduates), an exciting interdisciplinary program funded by the National Science Foundation (Award Number: 1560242). Target majors include biology (evolution, ecology), physics, chemistry, environmental science, geosciences, maritime industry/commerce, computer science and engineering majors.

To apply, please visit:

7) NPS 2017 Young Leaders in Climate Change Internships

NPS Seeks Applicants for 2017 Young Leaders in Climate Change Internships The NPS Climate Change Response Program and the University of Washington are pleased to invite graduate and upper-level undergraduate students and recent graduates to apply to the 2017 Young Leaders in Climate Change (YLCC) Initiative! The YLCC is a paid summer internship to work on diverse issues related to climate change and its effects in national parks. Applications are due January 19, 2017 by 12:01 PM PST.

8) Summer Forest Monitoring Technician (PA and WV)

The Pennsylvania State University Department of Ecosystem Science and Management is hiring two seasonal technicians to collect forest monitoring data in eight national parks in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, including the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, New River Gorge National River, and Gauley River National Recreational Area. This work is part of a long-term monitoring program that provides park staff with crucial information on the condition of the parks’ vegetation and how this condition is changing over time.

The positions begin in mid-May 2017 and continue for 12 – 15 weeks with compensation of $14-16 per hour depending on experience.  The technicians will travel to and be housed in or near a national park each week.  Reasonable travel expenses will be reimbursed.

Demonstrated experience in forest ecology, meticulous data collection skills, strong work ethic, and positive attitude are required. Applicants should enjoy working outdoors in a variety of conditions and be able to identify common trees and shrubs of Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Applicants must be able to follow complex detailed field protocols and work as a member of a team.  The ability to hike and work long hours in adverse conditions (e.g. steep terrain, hot/humid weather, stinging/biting insects, irritating plants) and in remote field sites is a must.  Applicants should be able to navigate in the woods by compass and using GPS. Additional tasks may include data entry and quality control of data.

If interested, please send: 1) a brief cover letter, 2) a resume, and 3) contact information for three references in a single Word or PDF document to Stephanie Perles [sjp16 at psu dot edu] by February 17, 2017.

9) Harvard Forest Undergraduate Internship Opportunity

Applications are now open for our fantastic (and well-paid) paid summer internships in plant & microbial ecology, art/design, computer science, biogeochemistry, conservation policy,  history, engineering, etc.

Depending on the project, students will conduct field and lab-work in old-growth forests,  historical archives, art/design studios and museums, biogeochemistry labs, long-term forest  study plots, data-rich computer environments, at the Harvard Farm and even at Henry David Thoreau’s cabin site at Walden.

Participants work closely with a faculty mentor and live on-site in our beautiful farmhouse  dorm. In addition to their research, students attend career panels, evening workshops, seminars and field trips.

We welcome applications from students at any U.S. college, community college or university.

Application instructions and FAQ’s are here:

9) Positions Available: Native Seed Collection Internship at Lake Mead National Recreation Area

Member will provide national service at Lake Mead National Recreation Area, a host site for the Nevada Conservation Corps AmeriCorps Program.

Description: Working collaboratively with Lake Mead National Recreation Area (LMNRA), the Great Basin Institute is recruiting three interns to assist the seed manager with scouting plant populations for seed collection and collecting native plant seeds. Work will include documenting all seed related activities and collections, manually cleaning seed by hand, and assisting with preparation of seed for seed storage for future restoration projects throughout southern Nevada and northwestern Arizona.  This position is an entry level internship that consists mostly of labor in the backcountry and at the Lake Mead Native Plant Nursery. At times, position also requires prolonged periods of sitting while cleaning seed.

Primary Responsibilities: •           Surveying and accessing suitable native plant populations by vehicle or on foot, and identification of native and non-native plants; •   Assist with weeding and irrigating native plant seed increase fields; •               Work on a 4-5 person seed collection team led by the native seed manager for Lake Mead NRA; •         Intern may also work with 5 to 10 member youth service groups and/or volunteers on seed collection projects; •        Must be able to operate a 4-wheel-drive vehicle and pass a federal background check.

Secondary responsibilities: additional tasks and duties that are preferential but secondary •               Assisting with native plant nursery operations including, but not limited to irrigation setup and repair, plant propagation, weed removal, and other general nursery operation; •               Additional duties may include checking backcountry traffic counters, checking weather stations, picking-up trash, rare plant plot monitoring, restoring off-road tracks, repair backcountry barriers, installing backcountry signs, watering plantings, installing plants, and other tasks associated with Mojave Desert restoration.

Related Responsibilities: •           Participate in trainings provided by Lake Mead NRA staff and community partners; •  Meet with Host Site Supervisor on a regular basis; •         Participate in community service days organized by NCC Program; and •            Participate in regular AmeriCorps team meetings.

Compensation: This is an AmeriCorps position, and candidates will receive a living stipend of $7,800 for the season. This is not an hourly wage or a salary and is paid to members every other week throughout the service term. Upon completion of AmeriCorps service, members shall receive an additional education award in the amount of $2,865 that can be used for paying off qualified student loans or paying tuition for a Title IV accredited college.

Qualifications: •               Dedication to the position and the AmeriCorps Service Contract •               Motivated, self-starter who is detail oriented; •  Flexibility to handle competing and changing priorities; •      Ability or willingness to learn how to identify  native and non-native plants of the desert southwest •               Ability to drive 4×4 vehicle •        Ability or willingness to learn how to navigate in the backcountry using maps and iphones or GPS units •           Ability or willingness to learn how to use iphones and/or GPS units such as Garmins, Mesas, and Trimbles to collect data •             Ability to use Microsoft Office Programs •            Ability to do physical labor in the backcountry •          Ability to sit for prolonged periods of time •               Motivated to learn about the park’s resources • Ability to communicate with park staff in an appropriate manner in written and verbal form •    Possess clean, valid, state-issued driver’s license; and •     Meet AmeriCorps eligibility requirements: (1) U.S. citizenship or legal resident alien status, (2) eligible to receive an AmeriCorps Education Award (limit of four in a lifetime, or equivalent of two full-time terms of service), and (3) pass National Sex Offender Public Registry (NSOPR) and federal criminal background checks.

How to Apply: Please follow this link to apply directly through our online portal: rf=ECOLOG&req=2016-ACI-026

10) Summer 2017 REU at the Pymatuning Lab of Ecology

The Richards-Zawacki lab at the University of Pittsburgh invites undergraduate applicants for a 10-week summer research experience at the Pymatuning Lab of Ecology in northwestern Pennsylvania ( This position is part of the National Science Foundation’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program. Ongoing work in the Richards-Zawacki lab aims to clarify the relationship between climate and the dynamics of chytridiomycosis, a fungal disease that threatens amphibian populations on several continents. The successful applicant will work collaboratively with other members of the Richards-Zawacki lab to survey local amphibians for Batrachochytrium fungi, the pathogens that cause chytridiomycosis, and also design and carry out a study to investigate the role of pond community characteristics on the seasonal dynamics of these infections. Room and board at the Pymatuning Lab of Ecology will be provided, along with transportation and a stipend of $500/week.

To apply, please send a one page personal statement (about your scientific interests and how this REU will support your professional goals), your resume or cv, unofficial transcripts, and the names of two professional references (including title, address, phone number and email address) to Dr. Cori Richards-Zawacki (  Applications are due March 3, 2017.

11) Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute –Internship in Forest Trophic Interactions

The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) is seeking two interns to participate in a European Research Council funded project addressing the ecological determinants of tropical and temperate trends in insect diversity. To answer key questions on global insect distribution, we are applying quantitative surveys of plant-herbivore-parasitoid food webs within paired sets of tropical and temperate forests from six continents, in Papua New Guinea (PNG), Gabon, Panama, the Czech Republic, Japan, and USA. This internship will be based in the CTFS-ForestGEO-Forest Ecosystems & Climate lab (PI: Kristina J. Anderson-Teixeira), which conducts a range of research with the overall goal of understanding the dynamics of forest ecosystems worldwide in an era of global change. Candidates should be advanced undergraduates or recent university graduates and have coursework in ecology, conservation biology, entomology, environmental sciences, or a closely related field. Field experience in terrestrial ecosystem ecology, forestry, entomology, or a related field is essential plus the ability to follow established survey and protocols, and collect detailed and accurate data. Candidates must have the ability to work in the field for prolonged hours in hot and humid conditions, to work independently, and to collaborate effectively as part of a research team. This is a 6-month position with a start date in mid-April 2017. The position(s) will be compensated with a stipend sufficient to cover living expenses, potentially including on-site housing. To apply, please email a cover letter describing your qualifications and interest in the position, CV, and contact information for 3 references to Erika Gonzalez-Akre at Deadline for application is January 31, 2017. The Smithsonian Institution values and seeks a diverse workforce; female and minority candidates are encouraged to apply.

12) Intern Opportunity – Black Tailed Prairie Dogs

Job Description and Duties: We are looking for 5 interns to be involved with a field ecology project on black-tailed prairie dogs for the period of Mar 1, 2017 to Aug 31, 2017. The project investigates the ecology of a wild population of prairie dogs in Grasslands National Park, SK and will involve live-trapping, handling and monitoring. Grasslands National Park represents one of the largest remaining tracts of native prairie in Canada, and prairie dog towns are home to a diversity of iconic grassland species (e.g., burrowing owls, swift fox, bison). Interns will have the opportunity of seeing all of these species, plus the many more resident in the Park. This is an excellent opportunity to gain experience working with a population of wild mammals in a spectacular setting and in collaboration with university, park and zoo researchers.

International applicants: If applicants are not Canadians or permanent residents, they will be required to apply to enter Canada as Visiting Research Students. To be eligible for this program, you must be an undergraduate or graduate student or be in between degrees (e.g., following graduation from a bachelors degree). As part of this program, applicants will be registered at the U of S in a non-credit activity. Applicants are eligible for this program for a maximum of 6 months per 12 month period.

Application forms and information are available at If you are interested in this program, please contact us (contact details below) and we will guide you through the process.

Skills Required: These positions are best suited to applicants with interests in ecology, evolutionary biology, wildlife, field biology, and/or conservation biology. As evidence of this, applicants must either be enrolled in, or have graduated from, a relevant discipline. The field house and study population are isolated (the nearest town is approx. 45 min away) and, as such, successful applicants need to be able to cope under these conditions, enjoy the outdoors, be up-beat, positive, responsible and work well as a member of a team. Evidence of these abilities (gained, for example, through previous involvement on field projects or extended back-packing trips) is required.

Terms of Employment: These are volunteer positions and a salary is not provided. We will be staying in Parks Canada housing in the heart of the park. Volunteers are required to provide for their own travel to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Travel between the field station and Saskatoon is provided.

If you wish to apply for one of these posts then please send a CV with a cover letter and contact details for three references (with e-mail addresses), by email to Jeff Lane ( by January 21, 2017. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.