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anne.peters@monash.edu

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  1. Volunteer field assistant(s) with nest searching experience, Melbourne, SE Australia, Sep-Dec 2019 We are looking for a volunteer field assistant to assist with research on social behaviour and heat stress in superb fairy-wrens (Malurus cyaneus). The birds are cooperatively breeding small songbirds, with a lovely character and stunning blue-and-black plumage in males. Our study population is located in Lysterfield Park, Melbourne, Australia, an easy to reach wonderful wild spot with plenty of mammals and birds. Fieldwork will take place during September-December, when most of the birds are breeding. We are seeking a volunteer field assistant to help monitor superb fairy-wren territories in a 5 km square area. Work will involve nest searching, monitoring all breeding attempts, re-sighting colour-banded birds, assisting in field experiments, mist netting and data entry. The field site is located 25 minutes drive from Monash University, Clayton, Melbourne, where the research group is based. This position will allow to develop relevant experience for those wishing to do a PhD or MSc in future. Volunteer field assistants must be flexible and willing to work long days – we will have 1.5 (1-2) days per week off, but timing may vary depending on weather conditions and breeding activity. Furthermore, field assistants must have full colour-vision, be physically fit, have good interpersonal skills, and be able to work as part of a team and independently in the field. Birds build small, well-hidden, domed nests in vegetation, so previous experience with nest searching under such conditions is essential; experience with bird banding, colour-band re-sighting or behavioural observations is a bonus. Fieldwork will start in early September 2019 (dates are somewhat flexible) and run for ~4 months. The cost of accommodation and local transport will be covered; (international) flights to and from Melbourne will be partially covered, or for highly experienced candidates may be fully covered. Applications from experienced couples that can share accommodation will also be considered. For local candidates, or those not requiring flights or accommodation, the equivalent remuneration will be offered. For further information and to apply, please send a CV, cover letter and contacts for at least two references that are familiar with your nest searching experience to Anne Peters: anne.peters@monash.edu. Applications will be reviewed as they are received, and we aim to fill the position by 31 May. To check the sort of research we do check https://sites.google.com/site/petersresearchgroup/ and http://monash.edu/science-stories/story/follow-the-birds/
  2. In the Behavioural and Evolutionary Ecology of Birds Group (https://sites.google.com/site/petersresearchgroup/) @ Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, two PhD positions (start date negotiable) are available to study how ambient temperatures affect physiology and behaviour of superb fairy-wrens Malurus cyaneus, a very well studied model species. The proposed projects will investigate effects of high temperatures on metabolism, condition, heat stress, behaviour, and molecular aging and how these might be mitigated by cooperative breeding. Additionally, the project will assess which individual attributes (age, sex, social status, morphology, genetic background) and environmental parameters (social group size, habitat quality) affect individual variation in response to increasing temperatures. One project will focus on immediate responses by nestlings, delayed effects into adulthood, and include experimental approaches. The second project will answer similar questions in adults. The students will have freedom to develop own research directions within the broad topic of heat stress. 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 well-funded through a Discovery Project grant of the Australian Research Council (DP18) to Assoc Prof Anne Peters. **Monash and the School of Biological Sciences** Monash is a member of the Group of Eight, a coalition of top Australian universities recognized for their excellence in teaching and research. It is highly ranked in all international university rankings (top 50-60). The School of Biological Sciences is a dynamic unit with strengths in both ecology and genetics and the nexus between these disciplines (monash.edu/science/about/schools/biological-sciences/). The University 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 excellent grades, 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 are highly desirable, a full driver’s licence is needed. Successful students will be accepted into the world class Monash Doctoral Program (www.monash.edu/science/schools/biological-sciences/postgrad); they will be offered a scholarship ($27K tax free) for three years, with the possibility of a six-month extension; tuition fees are covered for the duration of candidature. Highly competitive Australian or New Zealand students will be offered an additional $10k p.a. Monash Excellence top-up scholarship. Research costs and conference attendance are covered. See https://sites.google.com/site/petersresearchgroup/opportunities for further details. Contact Anne (anne.peters[at]monash.edu) if you would like further information on the project or the application process. PhD positions heat stress_SFW_2018.pdf
  3. 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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