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    Manakin Hybridization Ecology Field Assistant

    • Employer: University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
      Location: Bocas del Toro, Panama
      Country: Panama
      Last Date to Apply: No value
      Open Until Filled: Yes

    Agency: University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

    Location: Bocas del Toro, Panama

    Job Category: Temporary/Seasonal Position

    Salary: monthly stipend + housing + transportation (To/from Panama and within Panama)

    Start Date:  As soon as possible/immediately (with some room for flexible start, but the sooner the better)

    End Date: ~ July 15 2019

    An additional field assistant is wanted to assist graduate student with field activities and data collection on manakin hybridization in Bocas del Toro, Panama. We are investigating the effects of natural selection and sexual selection on a unique hybrid zone between the white-collared manakin (Manacus candei) and the golden-collared manakin (Manacus vitellinus). These manakins are small, colorful, frugivorous birds that form leks, communal breeding grounds, where males perform complex displays for visiting females. We will be investigating behavioral, ecological, and genetic differences between the hybrid and parental species in multiple leks across the Bocas del Toro province.


    Activities will include:


                -Brachial bleeding birds for genetic analysis

                -Nest searching, monitoring, and egg candling

                -Monitoring of courtship behaviors on leks

                -Resighting color banded birds

                -Radio telemetry on females and fledglings

                -Filming display courts and video analysis


    Housing and required transportation within Panama will be provided. Assistants will receive a monthly stipend of $400-500 a month depending on funding. Assistants will have flights to and from Panama covered up to around $600. Applicants from Panama and applicants with US passports are encouraged to apply. Crew of about 4 people will live closely in a field house located in the center of the hybrid zone. Field house has wifi and air conditioning. Applicants with a sense of humor and respectful household habits will have a great time working hard and relaxing with a small crew. This is a great opportunity to work in the tropics in an area rich with avifauna and crew trips to the mountains or local islands can (and should) be arranged.




    Applicants should have the ability to work long hours in hot and humid conditions 6 days a week. Mandatory skills and experience in mistnetting. Preferred skills/experience in nest searching. Previous experience with radio telemetry with birds highly preferred. Spanish language skills are helpful and highly preferred. Ability to drive a vehicle with manual transmission preferred and a valid US license is required.


    To apply, send a single pdf document containing 1) cover letter 2) resume 3) contact information for 3 references to Kira Long at kira2 AT illinois.edu. Please use the subject line “Manakin Ecology Field Assistant application.”


    Contact Person: Kira Long

    Contact email: kira2 AT illinois.edu


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