[MARMAM] 4 internships for Humpback Whale Research in Puerto Rico, USA

Mithriel MacKay mithriel.mackay at gmail.com
Fri Aug 8 07:59:35 PDT 2014

4 Internship positions for the Humpback Whale Project
Puerto Rico, USA  December 29, 2014 - May 01, 2015

Four full time internships are available for the winter of 2015 to assist
in on-going research focusing on humpback whales wintering off Puerto Rico.

*General description:*
Research for this project includes seasonal occurrence patterns and social
behaviors of humpback whales. You can anticipate a minimum of 1-3 days/week
of vessel based data collection, 2-3days/week land based data collection
(including theodolite), and 1-2 days/week at the field house analyzing
data. Acoustic data will be analyzed during days when field excursions are
not practical or possible. There may be opportunity for limited aerial
survey experience. Days off are infrequent but we will find time to let
interns do some sight-seeing!

Interns can expect to gain a solid foundation in marine and coastal
ecology, humpback whale ecology with a focus on behavioral ecology, and an
excellent mastery of field equipment related to this project. Boat work
includes data collection using hydrophones.

Interns must be available full time from December 29, 2014 until May 01,
2015. This is a low density area for humpbacks. The ability to maintain
land based observations for hours (or even a full day) without seeing a
whale requires commitment and patience. Vessel based data collection will
be from a small boat and is dependent on a team that is able to work well
in close quarters and is not prone to getting sea sick. Commitment and
dedication should be applied to computer tasks as they can become
monotonous. Day to day tasks will include posting updates to FaceBook,
updating the MCERC website, and other tasks as needed.

Some training will take place in December via meetings over the internet
prior to arrival in Puerto Rico. Interns must be willing to dedicate effort
from home, including reading publications and installing required software.

Interns are fully involved in this project!
You will work with students to make our research team effective. You will
be coached in teaching methods to facilitate mentoring students, and assist
in surveying and data collection. Tasks include- demonstrating equipment
and providing instruction to students, preparation and maintenance of
equipment, leading and participating in round table discussions of peer
reviewed publications, interacting with the public and peers, overseeing
household chores and field house living expectations.

You will be working on continually updating our humpback whale catalog,
photo identification, fluke matching, and acoustic analysis. You will be
taught to use bioacoustics software and databases. Neatness and attention
to detail is essential.

*Provisions & Accommodations: *
You will be provided with a place to sleep at the field house, meals,
training, required software, and transportation to all field sites from the
research station at no cost. Interns will pitch in for internet access and
other amenities (details are discussed in interviews). Please visit the
MCERC website and read the entire description of the research station (
While the field house is comfortable, there is no air conditioning or hot

*Travel: *
Interns are responsible for transportation to and from San German, Puerto
Rico, USA. All interns are required to live at the field house with the
team during their internship. International interns are responsible for
determining and acquiring all necessary travel documents to the USA.

*Qualifications: *
You must have at least a bachelor’s degree in marine biology or related
field. Priority is given to students with an upbeat, hardworking and
positive attitude. The ability to take direction and live in close quarters
with up to 10 people is a key to a successful field season. A stellar
academic average is a plus, but is not a requirement and should not
discourage interested people with less than perfect academic scores from
applying. A strong desire to learn new skills, mentor other students, and
promote a positive attitude towards stewardship is essential for
candidates. Please be self-motivated, energetic, patient, and enthusiastic!
You must enjoy working with a group from around the globe and be respectful
of cultural differences. Experience in boat operations and cetacean
research is a plus.

Candidates for internships must complete 3 interviews via Skype (2 are with
former interns) or in person prior to being accepted for a position for the
2015 field season. Interns must bring their own snorkel gear and lap top
with windows (and be willing to load the required programs) to the project.

Applications are being accepted until August 22, 2014. Notification for the
2015 season will be in early September. You must be prepared to purchase
travel (airfare, etc) immediately if you are accepted.

Interested applicants should send a letter of interest and CV (include
availability) in a single MS Word document to Mithriel at Marine-Eco.org.
Please flag the application by putting “2015 Internship application” in the
subject line and labeling your attachment with your name and “internship
Application”. Questions? Please post to our Face Book page or on the
“Contact Us” option from the MCERC website (www.Marine-Eco.org).

*}-wh^ale>   **}-wh^ale>   **}-wh^ale>   **}-wh^ale>   **}-wh^ale>   *

Mithriel M. MacKay
Ph.D. Candidate
Marine Mammal Research Program
Department of Marine Biology
Texas A&M University, Galveston
(830) 688-9878
mithriel.mackay at gmail.com


Director of Research and Education
Marine and Coastal Ecology Research Center
San German, Puerto Rico, USA
Pipe Creek, Texas 78063
www.Marine-Eco.org <http://www.marine-eco.org/>
MCERC.mail at gmail.com
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