About the Project
Model the spatial distribution of piscivorous fish and forage fish alongside fisheries in the Celtic and North Seas
Combine data and models to quantify the prey requirements of seabirds
Investigate how prey availability, consumption requirements of piscivorous fish and seabirds, and mortality and production at seabird colonies have changed through time
Identify whether commercial fisheries catch in is creating a detrimental impact on seabird breeding success and/or if competition between piscivorous fish and seabirds might exacerbate this impact
This project will be based in the Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield - ranked in the top 25 departments in the world for ecology - and has been developed in collaboration with the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH) Coastal Seas Ecology Group, responsible for some of the longest running and most comprehensive seabird population monitoring datasets in the world, and the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), a world leader in marine science including biodiversity and fisheries science. There will be opportunities to work closely with both partner institutions, giving the student the opportunity to explore the science-policy interface. The student will also have the opportunity to work with collaborators at the Sea Mammal Research Unity at St Andrews to develop the modelling framework. Results from this project are expected to feed in to the Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan, helping to prioritise actions that will embed the ecosystem approach into sustainable fisheries management whilst conserving seabird populations.
This project will suit a motivated student interested in marine ecosystems, seabird conservation, and/or fisheries, with an enthusiasm for working with data and a drive to develop high-level skills in computational ecology.
Science Graduate School
As a PhD student in one of the science departments at the University of Sheffield, you’ll be part of the Science Graduate School. You’ll get access to training opportunities designed to support your career development by helping you gain professional skills that are essential in all areas of science. You’ll be able to learn how to recognise good research and research behaviour, improve your communication abilities and experience the breadth of technologies that are used in academia, industry and many related careers. Visit http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/sgs to learn more.
This PhD project is part of the NERC funded Doctoral Training Partnership “ACCE” (Adapting to the Challenges of a Changing Environment https://acce.shef.ac.uk/. ACCE is a partnership between the Universities of Sheffield, Liverpool, York, CEH, and NHM.
Shortlisted applicants will be invited for an interview to take place in the w/c 10th February 2020.
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