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PhD in Seabird Ecology

Grant RW Humphries, December 9, 2013

Job description

Within this PhD project we will investigate the foraging ecology of Lesser Black-backed Gulls and Herring Gulls). By tracking individuals throughout their annual routine at high spatial and temporal resolutions we will quantify differential resource selection and the energetic expenditures linked with particular types of foraging and relate this to reproductive success and annual survival. We will also evaluate the implications of anthropogenic impacts on (marine) resources (such as fisheries) for these central place foraging birds, primarily within their breeding area (W Wadden Sea and southern North Sea), but also elsewhere during their annual cycle in different climate zones.

This project relies on tracking data collected between 2008 and 2013 but does include substantial further field studies (tracking and breeding biology) in at least two additional field seasons, 2014-2105. The project includes statistical and theoretical modelling of tracking data and energy budgets.

The PhD student will have to function in a small team (with supervisor, students and volunteer field workers) and is expected to share field work duties under pressure (from a progressing season) with co-workers, to participate in data collection, data processing of past and newly acquired data, as well as to write scientific papers on the results of his/her work.


We are looking for a highly motivated and driven individual with a Master degree in Marine Ecology or a related field, affinity for field work and preferably statistical or theoretical background as well. Experience with field studies (including ringing and tagging) is beneficial, but a genuine interest in field work is essential. Experience with the analysis of tracking data, programming in R and with statistical modeling is beneficial. Good English oral and writing skills are essential. Applicants are expected to stay and work on Texel, certainly within breeding seasons.

Conditions of employment:

A fulltime position for 4 years, a yearly 8% vacation allowance, year-end bonus and flexible employment conditions. Conditions are based on the Collective Labour Agreement of Research Centers. The position will be located on Texel. Cost of relocation and assistance with housing is provided by NIOZ.

Further information:

Further information about the project, including a full project proposal, can be obtained directly from the project leader, Dr. C.J. Camphuysen, or contact our HRM Department, Ms. Jolanda Evers, + 31 (0)222-369371


Applicants should send a cover letter with motivation, CV, names and email addresses of two referees, to the HRM Department, Jolanda Evers Royal NIOZ, P.O. Box 59, 1790 AB Den Burg, the Netherlands, or preferably per e-mail to: Please quote the vacancy number 2013- 109 in your application.

Closing date:

Applications can be submitted until February 15th , 2014