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  • ‘Immediate and delayed effects of heat stress in nestling superb fairy-wrens' 

    • Employer: Monash University
      Location: Melbourne
      Country: Australia
      Last Date to Apply: 07/30/2018
      Open Until Filled: No

    PhD position ‘Immediate and delayed effects of heat stress in nestling superb fairy-wrens' 

    In the Behavioural and Evolutionary Ecology of Birds Group (https://sites.google.com/site/petersresearchgroup/) @ Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, a PhD position (start date Sep-Oct) is available to study how ambient temperatures affect physiology and behaviour of superb fairy-wrens Malurus cyaneus. 

    The research will focus on effects of high nest temperatures on metabolism, condition, heat stress, behaviour, and molecular aging. This project will focus on immediate responses by nestlings, delayed effects into adulthood, and include experimental approaches. Additionally, the project will assess which individual attributes (age, sex, social status, morphology, genetic background) and environmental parameters (social group size, habitat) affect individual variation in response to increasing temperatures. 

    Field work will take place at Lysterfield Park, an open woodland near the university, where we study a large partly-colourbanded population. 

    The research is funded through a Discovery Project grant of the Australian Research Council (DP18) to Assoc Prof Anne Peters.


    Monash University is a member of Australia's Group of Eight coalition, and is internationally recognized for excellence in research and teaching. The School of Biological Sciences is home to a collegial and interdisciplinary research environment, with strengths in ecology, genetics and evolutionary biology. The Monash doctoral program includes additional training opportunities beyond the research program that enhance employability post degree. The School offers funding and opportunities to post-docs.  Monash is located in Melbourne, one of the most liveable cities in the world and a cultural and recreational hub.


    Requirements and further information

    Applicants must have self-motivation, enthusiasm, a background in behavioural and evolutionary ecology, a passion for studying wild animals in their natural environment, a strong work ethic, experience with fieldwork and/or bird handling and/or relevant quantitative skills, a full driver’s licence.

    Successful students will be offered a stipend (living-allowance) scholarship provided tax free for three years, with the possibility of a six-month extension. We also offer travel and establishment allowances to help in your move. Additionally, for international students, cost of tuition fees and compulsory Overseas Student Health Cover are covered. Research course fees for Australian or New Zealand citizens and Australian permanent residents are automatically covered under the Australian Research Training Scheme.

    In order to be eligible, students must have four-year degree with at least 6 months relevant research experience, outstanding grades, and excellent English. Details are here: https://www.monash.edu/science/schools/biological-sciences/postgrad/how-to-apply. Evidence of published research is a plus. 

    The application process takes place in two stages. Send your initial application to  Anne Peters (anne.peters[at]monash.edu), consisting of: a letter of motivation; a CV; overview of your academic results, and translation if required, preferably indicating cohort rank or percentiles; English test results if required; and the names and contact details of 3 academic references. Deadline is 1 August 2018; early applications are encouraged, application will be reviewed as soon as they arrive. Start date as soon as possible.

    After a review of all applications, you may be contacted for a skype or personal interview. If you are selected for a PhD position, you will be sent an invitation to submit a formal application through the Monash University web portal. 

    See https://sites.google.com/site/petersresearchgroup/for further details. Contact Anne (anne.peters[at]monash.edu) if you would like further information on the project or the application process. 

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