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Post-Doctoral Research Fellow




Reference: A4277Description: We are seeking a highly motivated post-doctoral researcher for a BBSRC funded project on 'The role of additive and non-additive genetic effects during animal contests in the beadlet sea anemone Actinia equina'. The project will be hosted at the Faculty of Science and the Engineering at Plymouth University and conducted in collaboration with the School of Biosciences at the University of Exeter.

The purpose of the project is to investigate the contribution of direct and indirect genetic components of variation in contest behaviour using sea anemones as a model system. As these animals readily reproduce asexually, producing multiple clones, they provide an ideal system for the investigation of 'genotype by genotype' interaction effects. Studying these sources of variation experimentally will allow us to directly test implicit assumptions about variation in fighting strategies that underpin much of contest theory. We will also be able to explore broader questions about the sources consistent among-individual variation in behaviour.

You will be responsible for input into the design and planning of experiments on contest behaviour in sea anemones. You will be the primary person responsible for the execution of these experiments. These will involve animal husbandry in the lab, field collection of animals, the staging, observation and scoring of agonistic encounters and there is the opportunity to learn molecular techniques for analysis of relatedness among anemones. You will be responsible for the collection, storage and management of the data that the experiments yield. In collaboration with the project team (Dr. Mark Briffa and Dr. Manuela Truebano at Plymouth University and Dr. Alastair Wilson at Exeter University) you will be responsible for the analysis of the data and for the preparation and submission for publication of resulting manuscripts. You will also contribute to the dissemination of the research though participation in relevant conferences and public engagement activities.

You should have an undergraduate or masters degree in a relevant subject (Biology, Zoology, Ecology) and a PhD in a relevant area of animal behaviour, evolutionary ecology or behavioural ecology. You should have a good understanding of evolutionary game theory, animal contest theory or quantitative genetics. Experience in experimental animal behaviour is essential and experience of working with aquatic animals, especially invertebrates, is desirable. You should have some experience or be willing to learn about molecular approaches for analysing relatedness among individuals. Familiarity with statistical software appropriate for running mixed -effects models is highly desirable.

Contact for informal discussion: Dr Mark Briffa, Associate Professor (Reader), on email mark.briffa@plymouth.ac.uk or telephone 01752 584632.

This is a full-time post working 37 hours per week on a fixed-term basis for 36 months.

Interviews are expected to take place early-July 2015.

Plymouth University is committed to an inclusive culture and respecting diversity, and welcomes applications from all sections of the community.

The University holds a Bronze Athena SWAN Award which recognises commitment to advancing women's career in STEMM academia.

Job Description

Region: Location: PlymouthSalary: £32277 to £37394 pa - Grade 7Package: Full-time, Fixed-term

Posted 22 days ago

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