[MARMAM] Seeking experienced field assistants for research on tropical dolphins in north-west Australia

Alexander Brown Alex.Brown at murdoch.edu.au
Wed Jul 17 18:11:18 PDT 2013


Seeking experienced field assistants for research on tropical dolphins in north-west Australia

Dates: commences 31 August 2013 for 10-12 weeks (ends mid-November).

Project title: Abundance estimation, residency and genetic connectivity of snubfin and humpback dolphins in the Kimberley region, Western Australia.

Institution: Cetacean Research Unit, Murdoch University - www.mucru.org

Overview: I am seeking experienced field assistants to assist with boat-based photo-ID and biopsy sampling in north-west Australia for approximately 10-12 weeks from 31 August 2013.

* Commitment to the full duration of the project is preferred, but a minimum commitment of the first/second ~5 weeks may also be considered *

This project<http://mucru.org/research-projects/snubfin-and-humpback-dolphins-in-the-kimberley-region-western-australia/> aims to collect baseline data on the local abundance, residency and genetic connectivity of Australian snubfin (Orcaella heinsohni) and Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis) in northern Western Australia. This is an opportunity to gain experience in field techniques for small cetacean research, while contributing to a project with a high conservation and management value.

Location: We meet in the town of Broome, then visit two different sites on the adjacent Dampier Peninsula. Approximately 5 weeks are spent at each location. These are typically remote locations with a tropical climate and limited amenities. Accommodation will comprise shared basic cabins or tents, with camp kitchen and bathroom facilities.

Duties: Searching for dolphins, driving the boat, taking photos, making and recording field observations, equipment cleaning and basic maintenance, data entry, a fair share in communal cooking and housekeeping duties, and generally working hard and having a great time. Expect early starts, hot weather, up to 11 hours on the water for multiple consecutive days, and up to a week between days off.

Prerequisites: Experience of working on and driving a small boat (essential); experience of photo-ID survey techniques (essential); no history of debilitating seasickness (essential); be team-oriented, patient, have a good sense of humour, and an enthusiastic attitude to hard work, long hours and collecting data on the natural environment (essential); experience of field research on small cetaceans (highly desirable).

Expenses: This is an unpaid position. However, food and accommodation at field sites are provided at no cost to assistants. Assistants are responsible for their own travel costs to/from Broome (direct flights available from Perth).

Please send a CV, a brief covering letter outlining your relevant experience, and contact details of two relevant referees to alex.brown at murdoch.edu.au by Friday 26 July 2013.

Alex Brown alex.brown at murdoch.edu.au<mailto:*j.tyne at murdoch.edu.au>
PhD Candidate, Murdoch University Cetacean Research Unit (MUCRU)
School of Biological Sciences and Biotechnology
Murdoch University, 90 South Street, Murdoch WA 6150
Blogs from previous trips:
http://mucru.org/blogs/a-productive-month-on-the-dampier-peninsula/
http://mucru.org/blogs/snubfin-season/

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