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  • MS Assistantship – Evaluating Approaches to Reduce Bird-window Collisions: Oklahoma State University


    Guest Scott Loss
    • Employer: Oklahoma State University
      Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma
      Country: United States
      Last Date to Apply: 09/30/2022
      Open Until Filled: No

    MS Assistantship – Evaluating Approaches to Reduce Bird-window Collisions: Oklahoma State University

    Description: A fully funded master's assistantship is available in Oklahoma State University’s Department of Natural Resource Ecology & Management, co-advised by Drs. Scott Loss and Tim O’Connell. The research project will involve fieldwork and analyses to evaluate the effectiveness of methods to reduce bird-window collisions, which are the top source of avian collision mortality in North America and worldwide. The study will include bird collision surveys at OSU buildings originally monitored in a similar baseline study (study details here: https://bit.ly/3PoNFTm) and treated with a commercially available film designed to deter bird collisions. The student also may have the opportunity to develop a companion study using existing or new data sources to evaluate effectiveness of other approaches and products designed to reduce bird-window collisions.

    The graduate student will begin courses in January 2023, and we anticipate that collision monitoring fieldwork will begin during spring migration in April 2023. Funding, which will be available to support the student through at least December 2024, will be primarily through a research assistantship, but the student will also be expected to TA for one academic semester (course TA assignment to be determined, but the student will likely have an opportunity to TA in either Dr. Loss’s Applied Ecology field course or Dr. O’Connell’s Ornithology course). A stipend of $1,575/month ($18,900/yr) will be provided along with full tuition waiver and health insurance at $20/month.

    Required qualifications: Applicants must possess an undergraduate degree in Natural Resource Management, Wildlife Ecology/Management, Ecology, or a related field; a strong work ethic and sense of self-motivation; an ability to work both independently and collegially with others; strong written and oral communication skills including experience communicating with the public during fieldwork; and an interest in urban ecology, conservation biology, and/or human threats to wildlife.

    Preferred qualifications: Ideal candidates will have one or several of the following skills and experiences: conducting, presenting, and/or publishing mentored research; coordinating and supervising field projects; conducting wildlife collision surveys; handling and identifying wild birds; and experience with statistical analyses.

    To Apply: Please send applications to Scott Loss (scott.loss@okstate.edu) by September 30th, 2023; applications should consist of a single zip file or merged pdf file that includes: (1) a cover letter outlining how you meet required and preferred qualifications, (2) a CV, (3) unofficial academic transcripts, and (4) contact information for three references. We are committed to fostering an environment where diversity of background and thought is accepted and encouraged, and we encourage all interested people to apply despite preconceived notions of their own experience as it relates to this project’s objectives.

    About the Loss and O’Connell Labs: Our labs lead and collaborate on a wide range of research projects in natural resource ecology and management, with strong emphases on landscape ecology, biodiversity conservation, wildlife ecology and management, and major global change issues like climate change, invasive species, and direct sources of bird mortality. For more information about our labs, see:

    Scott Loss’s Lab: https://scottrloss.wixsite.com/losslab
    Tim O’Connell’s Lab: https://timoconnell.wordpress.com/

    About Oklahoma and OSU: Oklahoma is one of the most ecologically diverse states, with ecosystems ranging from forested mountains in the east to mesas and canyons in the west, and including some of the largest remaining tracts of prairies in the world, including the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve, the largest remaining protected area of tallgrass prairie. Recreational opportunities abound, with national forests, grasslands, and wildlife refuges all within 2-3 hours of Stillwater, where OSU is located. In addition, Stillwater is 1 hour from both Oklahoma City and Tulsa, which have additional opportunities for recreation, sporting events, music, the arts, restaurants, etc.

    OSU is a land-grant institution with an enrollment of ~25,000 students, and it is located on the ancestral lands of the Kickapoo, Osage, Kiowa, and Quapaw peoples. Indigenous people from other Native nations also reside here, many of whom were forcibly removed from their ancestral lands. They all contribute to the history and current vitality of our region. The Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management is part of the Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources and conducts interdisciplinary research, instruction, and extension education to address the sustainable management and conservation of the wildlife, forest, rangeland, and fishery resources of Oklahoma and beyond. The Department is a source of cutting-edge research, quality instruction, and effective outreach to students, landowners, managers, and public agencies.

    Any offer of employment is contingent on the university’s verification of credentials and other information required by law and/or university policies, including but not limited to a criminal background check. Oklahoma State University, as an equal opportunity employer, complies with all applicable federal and state laws regarding non-discrimination and affirmative action. Oklahoma State University is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all individuals and does not discriminate based on race, religion, age, sex, color, national origin, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, disability, or veteran status with regard to employment, educational programs and activities, and/or admissions.




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