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Postdoctoral Researcher—Asian carp eDNA detection: Montana
Montana State University in Bozeman, Montana
 
 
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Date Posted 07/07/2021
Category
Admin-Other Administrative Positions
Employment Type
Application Deadline Open until filled
 
 
 
 
 

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Agency
Montana State University
Location
Bozeman, Montana
Job Category
Post Doctoral Appointments
Salary
$45,000/year plus benefits
Start Date
09/01/2021
Last Date to Apply
08/15/2021
Website
http://www.mtcfru.org/
Description
A postdoctoral research opportunity is available at Montana State University to develop a scientifically rigorous monitoring program for Asian carp detection in Region 6 (Mountain-Prairie Region) of the US Fish and Wildlife Service using eDNA sampling. The program will be based at the USFWS Bozeman Fish Technology Center (BFTC). The successful candidate will work in close cooperation with Jeff Powell, Director of the Bozeman Fish Technology Center, and will be advised by Alexander Zale, Leader of the Montana Cooperative Fishery Research Unit at MSU. Initial funding will support the position for 22 months. Additional funding will be acquired to extend the duration of the position as required or desired by the USFWS and sought by the research team to explore additional research questions and opportunities. The USFWS and its Missouri basin partners seek to confirm use of existing Asian carp eDNA markers in the basin, develop statistically sound sampling plans for Asian carp eDNA, and develop management and communication protocols for eDNA detections within the basin. The postdoctoral researcher will coordinate field sampling of eDNA water samples and selected physical and chemical water quality attributes by USFWS field sampling crews using standard protocols. The postdoctoral researcher will select the sites and frequency of sample collection in the Middle Missouri River Basin. The sampling design will include locations at which differing numbers of Asian carp are known to be present and at which physical and chemical factors hypothesized to influence eDNA detection vary to determine how both Asian carp abundances and water quality affect eDNA detection probabilities. Laboratory analyses of eDNA presence and concentration will be performed at the Bozeman Fish Health Center. The postdoctoral researcher will manage the resulting data and perform appropriate statistical analyses. Based on findings, a rigorous sampling strategy will be developed for monitoring Asian carp using eDNA in the USFWS Mountain-Prairie Region. A communication plan will be developed to disseminate findings to critical stakeholders with whom sampling guidelines and protocols will be developed.
Qualifications
Required qualifications A doctoral degree in molecular genetics or a related field earned before the start date. Demonstrated experience working in molecular laboratories with experience in eDNA assay development and validation, extraction, and PCR-based analyses. Statistical modelling, analytical, and sampling design experience, particularly experience with Bayesian approaches and occupancy modeling. Preferred qualifications Excellent verbal and written communication skills as demonstrated by scientific presentations and peer-reviewed publications. Experience designing and conducting ecology, fishery, or limnology research projects. Ability to work professionally and productively with diverse agency and academic collaborators. Expertise in programming languages (e.g., R, Stan, Python) for workflow pipeline development. Please send a cover letter and resume that includes contact information for 3 references to Alexander V. Zale (zale@montana.edu) by 15 August 2021. Start date will be in fall 2021 or thereabouts.
Contact Person
Alexander V. Zale
Contact eMail
zale@montana.edu

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