Behavioral Ecology assistanships ~

16 de noviembre de 2009

Behavioral Ecology assistanships

Two full-time field assistant positions in behavioral ecology are available
late February-early April 2010. The successful applicants will help
investigate parent-offspring communication in treehoppers (Hemiptera:
Membracidae) at Ordway-Swisher Biological Station (OSBS). Applicants with
background and interests in ecology, evolution and behavior are especially
encouraged to apply. Applicants should be patient and able to work long
hours with good attention to detail. Interested applicants should email
Jennifer Hamel at

Platycotis vittata are phloem-feeding insects that occur on several species
of oaks at OSBS. A P. vittata family develops over the course of about a
month on an oak branch. The mother defends her 30-50 offspring from
invertebrate predators during this time. Mother and offspring communicate
via vibratory signals through the branch, and offspring signals appear to
elicit defensive behavior from the mother.

The goals of this research include investigating the function(s) of signals
produced by the mother after predator encounters and assessing abundance of
some known invertebrate predators. The successful applicants will assist a
University of Missouri doctoral candidate in all aspects of field research,
including locating treehopper families, conducting vibratory playback
experiments, and ecological sampling. Research will be conducted in the
field at OSBS. Research assistants will be expected to camp at the station,
approximately 30 miles east of Gainesville, FL. Camping fees will be covered
and a modest stipend provided; hot showers and wireless internet are
available at OSBS for campers.

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