Postdoctoral Researcher Behavioral Ecology

UC Santa Cruz

Huntington Beach, California

Job Type Student / postdoc
Salary Details 64,480-69,342

Postdoc in behavioral ecology, University of California Santa Cruz

A two-year postdoctoral position is available in the Forest Fear Lab in the Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology at the University of California Santa Cruz to develop field studies and model existing data on the responses of animal communities to predation risk. Our work has traditionally focused on evaluating the responses of mixed species bird flocks under various contexts of predation threat in South America. More broadly the position is ideally suited to researchers with an interest in behavioral interactions centering on social information and its implications for understanding these implications for larger biological communities.

The postdoc will join a collaborative team that includes researchers from University of Florida, UCLA, la Universidad del Norte, ICESI in Colombia and Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina in Peru. The postdoc will have the opportunity to mentor graduate and undergraduate students, design and lead research, manage and analyze large datasets, prepare conference presentations and manuscripts, and coordinate a research collaboration. Research in our lab group uses empirical data, statistical models, and phylogenetic approaches to understand how species share predator threat information and the wider implications of this information use for understanding patterns of species assemblage (https://forestfearlab.com).

The ideal candidate will have a strong statistical background and is open to learn multiple approaches to statistical inference for hierarchical models with the project collaborators. In particular, we expect that this project will result in significant novel contributions (critiques and improvements) to state-of-the-art statistical approaches in behavioral and community ecology. There are also ample opportunities for developing pipelines for machine learning to classify vocalization types of subsets of bird species in the contexts of different levels of predator threat. There is room for independence so while candidates will have the opportunity to contribute to existing research projects, they can also develop their own as long as they align with the interests of the lab.

Applicants with evidence of creativity, productivity, strong oral and written communication abilities, and enthusiasm are especially encouraged to apply, particularly those that bring a new perspective, new ideas, or a new skillset to the team. A promising record of publication is highly valued. The successful applicant will be an independent, motivated problem solver who communicates well and enjoys working in a collaborative setting. We value a healthy work-life balance and pursue actively inclusive and anti-racist practices.

The work environment will primarily be a field lab on the beautiful Coastal Science Campus at UCSC within a short walk of the ocean and easy access to mountains and open space. The Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (EEB) offers a diverse, exciting, and supportive environment for learning and research. Depending on applicant experience work may involve travel for field work to Latin America.

Position details

The postdoc start dates are flexible, though earlier dates (e.g., Fall 2024) are preferred. Starting salary range is $64,480 to $69,342 per year depending on experience and includes health insurance and other benefits. This is a two-year appointment.



Application process

Review of applications is ongoing as of April 15th, 2024. Interested candidates should submit: 1) a one-page cover letter that describes their interest in the position, their relevant skills and experience, and their preferred start date, 2) a CV, and 3) the names and contact information of three scientists familiar with their work. Submit by email to arimartinez@ucsc.edu  - in the subject line please put: BEpostdoc

Ari Martínez Assistant Professor Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology University of California Santa Cruz Santa Cruz, CA 95060 USA

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.

Category Ecology , Wildlife