M.S. Graduate Assistantship in Wildlife Ecology or Ecology & Environmental Sciences

Aquatic Ecology of Northern White-Cedar Lowlands

University of Maine, Orono, and the USGS Maine Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit

M.S. Graduate Assistantship in Wildlife Ecology or Ecology and Environmental Sciences

Responsibilities: Incumbent will participate in a study on freshwater ecology of Northern Forest lowlands, including forested swamps and seeps. The project will inform understanding of the intermittent wetland habitats and processes associated with management of northeastern lowland forests, focusing on northern white-cedar forests. This includes quantifying ecological impacts in these systems and developing standardized measurement protocols. The specific objectives are: 1) to compare wetland processes across harvesting treatments in northern white-cedar forests, with particular focus on decomposition, and insect biomass, assemblages, and biodiversity within the wetted environment; 2) to develop standard quantification methods for aquatic leaf litter processing, wood decomposition and insect biodiversity in seasonally wetted lowlands that can be applied throughout the Northern Forest; and 3) to communicate about tradeoffs in wetland ecosystem condition and biodiversity associated with harvest regimes to forestry practitioners to aid lowland forest management planning.

While experience with, and enthusiasm for, macroinvertebrates, R, and other aquatic field and laboratory techniques would be desirable, a willingness to learn and attention to detail are necessities. Good communication skills are essential as this project will be collaborative with multiple partners including an exciting team of researchers and resource practitioners.

Qualifications: B.S. in biology, ecology, statistics, or other relevant discipline, quantitative skills, interest in aquatic ecology and excellent work ethics. We are committed to valuing diverse identities, experiences, and skills.

Salary: $23,000 per year (2 years) will be paid through Research Assistantship. Tuition and half of health insurance will be covered by the project. There may also be an opportunity for one or two semesters of Teaching Assistantship support.

We especially encourage applicants from underrepresented or historically excluded groups to apply.

Please apply at tinyurl.com/CedarLowlands

~Christina Murphy (http://www.reservoirwebs.org/ and https://www1.usgs.gov/coopunits/unit/Maine)
~Noah Charney (https://umaine.edu/wle/faculty-staff-directory/noah-charney/)
~Laura Kenefic (https://www.fs.usda.gov/research/about/people/lkenefic)
~Sue Eggert (https://www.fs.usda.gov/research/about/people/seggert)
~Shawn Fraver (https://forest.umaine.edu/faculty-staff/shawn-fraver/)

Questions? Please email christina.murphy@maine.edu with the subject header “Northern White-Cedar Assistantship”