Postdoctoral Opportunity - Scripps Institution of Oceanography Marine Biology Research Division

Postdoctoral Opportunity with the Marine Biology Research Division at SIO

Postdoctoral Scholar - Employee

Academic Division: Scripps Institution of Oceanography 

Academic Department/Research Unit: Marine Biology Research Division

Disciplinary Speciality of Research: parasitology, physiology, behavior, fish, birds, ecology, estuaries. 

Description: The position will involve taking on a 1.5 year project in the Hechinger Lab at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego.  The project is part of a larger, international project.  Collaborators include Dr. Dyvind Dverli (Norwegian University of Life Sciences) and Dr. Kelly Weinersmith (Rice University). The overall project weds parasitology, ecology, behavior, evolution, neurobiology, and omics. This post-doc will examine the impacts on estuarine birds by Euhaplorchis caifornienis, a trematode parasite.  The parasite uses bird as final hosts, but any costs of parasitism are countered to unknown extend by the parasites modifying the behavior of the birds prey, a killifish, making them easier to catch. 

The current plan is for the post-doc to lead a laboratory study using controlled exposures of final hosts (birds, rodents) to document the parasite impacts on those hosts.  Impacts will be measured at least by growth rates, and likely metabolic rates (respirometry).  The post-doc may also be involved with other aspects of the project, including a field experiment using fish in enclosures to quantify how fish infection changes bird predation rates and success. 

Salary/Stipend Information: NIH standard & based on years of postdoc experience. 

Qualifications and preferred academic background: Candidates should possess some or all of these attributes (some of which, including parasitological skills, can be learned on the job): 

  1. Ability to handle, maintain, and dissect birds and rodents. 
  2. Ability to do respirometry on air breathing vertebrates
  3. Ability to dissect fish, birds, and rodents and quantify parasite abundance and body size
  4. Have good communication, organizational, collaborative skills
  5. Have a solid analytical skills.  At least a working knowledge of general and generalized linear models.  Dynamical modeling skills are a plus, but not required. 
  6. Proven writing/publication skills as indicated by published papers
  7. Experience or ability to deal with live, wild estuarine birds. 

Appointment length/period: Appointment will start as early as 1 August 2016 and continue for 1.5 years.  

Application procedure: Send an email with subject header "POSTDOC APPLICATION" with an attachment of a single PDF file that includes a cover letter, CV, statement of research interests, and contact information for three references to Dr. Hechinger at

Application Closing Date: 24 Jun 2016 or until position filled