Full-time Research Assistant (Hot Birds Project)

Company: The Fitzpatrick Institute of African Ornithology

City: Van Zylsrus

Closing Date: Friday, August 4, 2017

Contact Email: abourne.uct@gmail.com

Applicants are invited for a full-time research assistant opportunity associated with the Fitz, a world-renowned Centre of Excellence in ornithological research. The position is based at the Kuruman River Reserve (KRR), a large research station home to the Kalahari Meerkat Project and the Southern Pied Babbler (SPB) Research Project. The research assistant will support a Fitz Hot Birds Project PhD student. Research focuses on the impacts of extreme heat on animals in arid environments and the extent to which cooperative behaviour might mitigate negative consequences of heat stress. 

Duration: Mid-September 2017 to February 2018 (5-6 months).

Remuneration: R6,000 per month. (Accommodation and local transport is provided).

Working conditions: 5.5 days per week. Fieldwork is from dawn to dusk. Temperatures can exceed 40°C. 

Tasks and Responsibilities:

  • Perform behavioural observations of SPB across a range of daytime temperatures and group sizes.
  • Conduct stable isotope treatments with SPB across a range of daytime temperatures and group sizes.
  • Assist the PhD student with accessing nests to measure and ring nestlings and record/playback nestling begging calls.
  • Collect life history and nest life history data on SPB groups and individuals and updating databases.

Prior experience with field-based animal behaviour observations will be an advantage.

To apply, please send your CV and a short motivation letter to Amanda Bourne (abourne.uct@gmail.com).