PAID FIELD ASSISTANT FOR INSECT HOST-PARASITOID & GLOBAL CHANGE PROJECT IN WESTERN OAK ECOSYSTEMS led by Dr. Kirsten Prior at Binghamton University SUNY (priorecologylab.com). We are looking for a field assistant to work collaboratively as a part of a team examining insect-host parasitoid interactions in oak gall-wasp communities in western oak savanna ecosystems. This project examines the community dynamics of range expansions, asking how interactions are altered under range expansions, and how altered interactions influence the dynamics of range-expanding species. The field assistant will be responsible for assisting with conducting experiments and sampling oak galls on Garry (Oregon white) oak trees (Quercus garryana) in northern Oregon, Washington State, and Vancouver Island, British Columbia.
Duties will involve daily travel to and from field sites (from 20 mins. To 1.5 hours away), collecting oak gall-wasps from trees, sorting and rearing galls and gall emergents, collecting other spatial and environmental data at sites, setting up enclosure experiments at sites, and data entry and processing. Given the nature of conducting time-sensitive surveys in the field, and the logistics of traveling to several regions, the work schedule needs to be flexible, and work hours will depend on when tasks need to be completed and on weather conditions. Thus, the candidate should be able to work somewhat flexible hours (i.e., maybe on a Saturday). The candidate needs to like to spend time outdoors, be comfortable hiking long distances on hilly terrain, be able to travel considerable distances in a vehicle, be willing to camp for several nights at a time, be able to work well in a team and to maintain a positive disposition under field conditions. The candidate should also have an ability to focus, be motivated to complete sometimes tedious tasks (e.g., working with small organisms), be motivated to learn to identify species in the field.
Qualifications: 1) A BachelorÃfÂ¢Ã’ÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s degree (or working towards) in biology, ecology & evolution, entomology, or a related field. 2) Previous field research experience. 3) Have an interest in ecology & evolution, botany, or entomology. 4) Be mature, responsible, flexible, dedicated, and motivated. 5) Be able to work well as a part of a team and to live and work well with others. 6) Be able to hike long distances and in hilly terrain. 8) Must have a valid driverÃfÂ¢Ã’ÂEURÃ’Â(tm)s license and a passport. 7) Be comfortable driving a large vehicle, sometimes for long distances.
Compensation & Details: Salary is commensurate with experience. Housing will be paid (shared housing with ~1 graduate student) likely in northern Oregon. The technician will be responsible for their own food, and there will be a kitchen in the shared residence. Gas will be covered for the use of a vehicle to get groceries. Ideally, the technician will travel to Binghamton, NY and help to drive the field vehicle (with one other person) to the west coast. Travel to and from Binghamton will be covered. Ideal dates are from mid-May through July; however, dates can be somewhat flexible and could be extended. The candidate must commit to the full working period – with some exceptions that would need to be discussed upfront.
To apply send (1) a cover letter explaining why you are interested in the position and highlight your relevant qualifications; (2) a CV or resume; (3) the names and contact information (email and phone number) for three references. Email the document as a single PDF file (file name should include your last name) to Kirsten Prior (firstname.lastname@example.org) with ÃfÂ¢Ã’ÂEURÃ’ÂoeWestern oak_field assistant positionÃfÂ¢Ã’ÂEURÃ’Â in the subject line. We will begin reviewing applications immediately. Please apply as soon as possible, but by March 25th for full consideration.