REU position in desert stream ecology at ASU

We are seeking two summer undergraduate researchers to participate in a project investigating how variation of streamflow affects energy transfer through stream food webs. The goal of the Food Chain Length (FCL) project is to link the mechanisms of temporal variation in streamflow and intensity of disturbance regimes to FCL in aridland streams. Ongoing research conducted in streams across Arizona includes repeated measures of variation in food chain length, ecosystem metabolism, nitrate concentrations, and experimental nitrogen pulse manipulations. Additionally, we are investigating how flood pulses of water and nitrogen stimulate production in the riparian ecosystem by measuring changes in soil processes, primary producers, and consumers.

Students will contribute both to the field campaign and laboratory sample processing. Students will also collaborate closely with the principal investigator, graduate students, and technicians to develop an independent research project that will build on the ongoing research.

Fieldwork will consist of traveling to rivers across the state of Arizona for aquatic biological surveys, water quality measurements, sensor maintenance, and requires spending long days in the desert during the Arizona summer, often carrying heavy equipment. Lab work will consist of processing samples for stable isotope analysis, invertebrate sorting, and soil microbial activity and nutrient assays.

Applicant requirements: Students must have demonstrated interest in ecology. The position lasts 12 weeks, preferably starting in early May, though exact dates are flexible and is based at Arizona State University. Application is restricted to currently enrolled undergraduates that graduate no sooner than fall 2017. All applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

Desired qualifications: Previous experience with laboratory or field-

based research; coursework in biology, ecology, chemistry, and math/statistics; enthusiasm about conducting both field and lab work, with occasional long days in the field or multi-day field trips; valid U.S. driver=92s license. Women, underrepresented minorities, and persons with disabilities are especially encouraged to apply.

To apply: 1) letter summarizing research interests and experience, 2) list of relevant coursework, and 3) CV to Dr. Tamara Harms ( by March 21, 2017