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PhD in wildlife ecology: impacts of bushfires and invasive predators on native mammals in Australia


Project Description

We are seeking a PhD student for an exciting new project on the impacts of bushfires and invasive predators on native mammals in south-eastern Australia.

Introduced foxes and feral cats have caused widespread biodiversity loss in Australia, but they do not act alone to impact native fauna. Emerging evidence suggests that bushfires can exacerbate their impacts by removing vegetation cover and making prey species more vulnerable to predation.

This project will experimentally test whether providing supplementary refuges for prey species post-fire can improve their survival and population persistence. The project will also assess the role of natural post-fire refuges and quantify the response of predators to fire. The student will have the opportunity to develop additional components around this core theme.

The project has an existing operating budget and is a collaboration between Deakin University, University of Sydney, and the New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service and Office of Environment and Heritage.

The supervisory team includes Dr Tim Doherty, Prof. Chris Dickman and Prof. Don Driscoll. The student will be based in the dynamic and supportive Centre for Integrative Ecology at Deakin University’s Burwood campus in Melbourne, Australia.

The project will involve substantial fieldwork, thus the successful candidate must be physically fit, enjoy fieldwork and have a manual driver’s license. The successful candidate must also be able to work independently and with external collaborators, and show a high level of initiative. The successful applicant will have strong undergraduate marks, a strong Masters/Honours degree, and ideally one or more journal publications.

Funding Notes

The candidate will need to independently obtain a scholarship, such as a Research Training Program or Deakin University Postgraduate Research Scholarship. More information can be found here: View Website

Please review the scholarship eligibility guidelines prior to submitting an expression of interest.

To submit an expression of interest, please email using the subject line 'PhD expression of interest', providing information on your work and research experience and why you are interested in the project. Please also include your academic transcripts and CV.

Applications will remain open until a suitable candidate is found, but ideally the student will begin by mid-2019.

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