Research technician position working with ants

The Invasive Species Research Group at the Brackenridge Field Laboratory, University of Texas at Austin is looking to hire a research technician.   The position will involve a mix of field and laboratory based investigations into the ecology and natural enemies of tawny crazy ants and imported fir e ants.  Please find the text of the posting below and apply at:   Posting number:


We are looking for someone to start as soon as possible. The posting will close by March 24th.


Salary: Proposed Salary Minimum: $22,884 =96 Proposed non-published maxim um

limit: $26,000

General Position Notes: Job is a mixture of field and laboratory based investigation. Job requires frequent overnight travel to field sites in remote regions of Texas. Camping out will be required at some sites. Work will be outside during Texas summer. Experimental protocols will require  a non-standard work schedule. Work will often involve long days and short weeks, working evenings, mornings and/or weekends.

Purpose: Technician will follow the direction of the lead investigator to carry out studies examining the biology and ecology of tawny crazy and natural enemies of this ant, including microsporidian pathogens and phori d fly parasitoids. Driving a UT vehicle is an essential function of the position.

Essential Functions

=95=09Function 1: Perform field assays of tawny crazy ant, and native ant abundances and experiments on species interactions and ecology. =95=09Function 1 Percent Time: 30.00 %


=95=09Function 2: Conduct laboratory experiments investigating the biolog y of a microsporidian pathogen and a phorid fly parasitoid of this ant.

=95=09Function 2 Percent Time: 25.00 %


=95=09Function 3:  Conducting experiments into the chemical ecology of an t species interactions.

=95=09Function 3 Percent Time: 25.00 %


=95=09Function 4: Staining and counting microsporidian spore loads in inf ected ants using compound microscope.  Sort, identify and record ants and other arthropods from pitfall traps. Identify ants and phorid flies to species level and other arthropods to order level. Function 4 Percent Time: 10.00 %


=95=09Function 5: Record all data in field datasheets, and enter data int o spreadsheets. Use GPS to set out transects and record features. Store and label specimens in alcohol vials or in pinned collections. Curate materia ls and maintain records. =95=09Function 5 Percent Time: 10.00 % Essential Functions Percent Time Total: 100.00 % Marginal/Incidental Functions Maintain vehicles in clean, roadworthy condition. Maintain the workspace  in a orderly state. Organize work flow, and maintain activity schedule on multiple projects simultaneously. Collect fire ant colonies. Other relate d functions as assigned. Required Qualifications High school graduation or GED. A combination of two years of experience i n a natural science field, or a technical laboratory. A strong work ethic and attention to detail. Ability to work outside throughout the summer and ca rry loads over rough ground. Tolerance of heat and insect stings / bites. Fin e motor skills. Commitment to safety. Equivalent combination of relevant education and experience may be substituted as appropriate: Yes Preferred Qualifications Bachelors or masters degree in biological science. Strong background and interest in entomology and ecology. Experience in field ecological studie s and experiments. Experience with insect identification. Experience with micro-dissection and microscopy. Laboratory experience in chemistry.

Experience with molecular lab procedures. Computer skills including familiarity with spreadsheet manipulation, analysis and graphing in Microsoft Excel. Experience using GPS. Excellent organizational, interpersonal and communication skills needed. Ability to perform as a member of a dynamic research team.