[MARMAM] Field assistants needed for research on Burrunan Dolphins in Coffin Bay, South Australia

Fernando Diaz Aguirre fernando.diaz at flinders.edu.au
Tue Jul 2 22:04:49 PDT 2013

Dear MARMAMers,

Field assistants needed for research on Burrunan Dolphins in Coffin Bay, South Australia

Fieldwork dates: Volunteers are needed from 9th September to 30th November 2013.

Application deadline: 30th July 2013

Project title:  Population size, spatial ecology and socio-genetic structure of the Burrunan dolphins (Tursiops australis) in Coffin Bay, Thorny Passage Marine Park (TPMP), South Australia.

Institution: Cetacean Ecology, Behaviour and Evolution Lab (CEBEL); Flinders University; South Australia

Overview: We are seeking experienced field assistants to help two PhD students during spring season with boat-based photo-ID of Burrunan dolphins (Tursiops australis) in Coffin Bay, one of the most beautiful marine parks of South Australia.

* Commitment to the full duration of this time will be highly favoured.

Project aim: provide baseline information on the ecology, habitat use, social and genetic population structure of Burrunan dolphins in the TPMP in South Australia. This research is part of a larger research program into this species lead by the Cetacean Ecology, Behaviour and Evolution Lab at the School of Biological Sciences, Flinders University.
This is an opportunity to gain experience in field techniques for small cetacean research and contribute to a project with very high conservation and management value.
Duties: Searching for dolphins, driving the boat, photo-identification, recording field observations, equipment cleaning and data entry (incl. fin matching).

Expectations: Field assistants need to be adaptable and patient as weather is highly dependent. We will be committed to go sampling everyday whenever weather allows us. If not, we'll be working in data entry and fin matching of identified individuals.
Assistants will need to be prepared for early morning departures (6-7AM) and long days (6-8 hours) on the water for multiple consecutive days. Expect up to a week between days off, as field work is weather dependent.


ü  Experience of working on a small boat (highly desirable, Coxswain certificate will be highly favoured);

ü  Experience of photo-ID survey techniques (highly desirable);

ü  Experience of field research on small cetaceans (highly desirable);

ü  Enrolled in or completed a degree in biology, marine science, animal behaviour or a related field (desirable)

ü  No history of debilitating seasickness (essential);

ü  Be team-oriented, patient, and have an enthusiastic attitude to hard work and collecting data on the natural environment (essential);

ü  Fluent English or Spanish (highly desirable)
We'll provide accommodation during the entire field season in Coffin Bay. Unfortunately, we are unable to provide monetary compensation. Assistants will be responsible for their own travel to Port Lincoln, South Australia, and will have to pay for their own food. We'll share house duties including cooking and cleaning.
If you are interested, please send a CV, a brief covering letter outlining your relevant experience, and contact details of two relevant referees to Cecilia.passadore at flinders.edu.au<mailto:Cecilia.passadore at flinders.edu.au> and fernando.diaz at flinders.edu.au<mailto:fernando.diaz at flinders.edu.au> by 30th July 2013.

Kind Regards,

Cecilia and Fernando

Fernando Diaz-Aguirre
Marine Biologist (MSc), PhD Candidate
Cetacean Ecology, Behaviour and Evolution Lab
School of Biological Sciences
Flinders University of South Australia
GPO Box 2100/Adelaide SA 5001
Mobile: +61 4 98189090
fernando.diaz at flinders.edu.au<mailto:fernando.diaz at flinders.edu.au>

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