Recent activity

Re-announcement for Ph.D. scholarship in Poland for study on seabirds in Antarctic

Dariusz Jakubas, September 20, 2016

Project title: Foraging ecology of two sympatric storm-petrels (Wilson’s storm petrel Oceanites oceanicus, and black-bellied storm petrel Fregetta tropica) breeding in the maritime Antarctic

Project objectives: The aims of this study are: 1) to assess the degree of inter- and intra-specific (sex, age groups) segregation, and individual foraging specialisation; 2) to investigate variability of diet composition at different temporal scales: between life-history-stages (breeding vs non-breeding periods), and within the breeding season; 3) to study potential effects of climate changes on foraging strategies by comparing the diet composition between recent and available historical data from the same study site; 4) to compare foraging behaviour and distribution between the species and sexes based on data from GPS loggers; 5) to compare locations of foraging areas determined based on GPS tracking data and estimated from regression function based on isotopic signatures of feathers.

Financial support comes from Polish National Centre of Science and includes scholarship and all costs of fieldwork and analyses. The PhD monthly scholarship is 2700 PLN, ~ 628 EUR, gross which allows for reasonable living in Poland. It is available for 3 years. Funding for the rest of the PhD is expected to be gained from other sources (university studentships).

Job description: This project combines fieldwork, labwork, data analysis and writing the papers. The fieldwork will be conducted on King George Island, South Shetlands, Antarctic (accommodation at Polish Antarctic Station: link during ~3 months (Dec-March) in two seasons in a small 3-4 people team. The field work will include nest searching, bird catching, marking, GPS loggers deployment, measuring of birds, collection of diet and feather samples. The activities will be conducted both at day and night hours. The lab and office work (~8 hours per day) will be carried out at the University of Gdańsk (Poland). The labwork will include prey item identification from regurgitated food, preparing samples for isotopic analyses and molecular sex identification. Dissertation will consist of few papers published in high-impacted journals. The study will be supervised by Dr Dariusz Jakubas (Univeristy of Gdańsk, Poland). The position is expected to start just after recruitment.

Job requirements

  • documented M.Sc. degree in biology, ecology, statistics or similar sciences.
  • fluent English, enabling communication and scientific writing.
  • high motivation and experience in fieldwork with birds: searching for nests, catching, measuring, banding etc.
  • good health, and strong physical and psychological condition (intensive fieldwork in two seasons, ca 3 months each in a small team, in tough ambient conditions).
  • capability to work in a group and individually.
  • high ethical standards, reliability, precision, and persistence in fieldwork, lab work and manuscripts preparation

Extra points

  • experience in publication preparation documented by authored/co-authored papers.
  • knowledge of statistical methods; experience in R software highly desired.
  • experience in GIS analyses.
  • experience in laboratory work (molecular sex identification and samples preparation for isotopic analyses will be a part of the study).
  • sense of humour and omnivority.

How to apply?

Your application should include:

  1. covering letter detailing your reasons for applying and why you have selected this project.
  2. CV with scientific achievements and experience including papers published in scientific journals, awards, scholarships, participation in workshops, scientific projects, etc.
  3. letter of recommendation from someone who knows you from previous collaboration, e.g. your supervisor;

Please send your application to Dr. Dariusz Jakubas (, deadline: 6 October 2016 .

The first decision will be made until 10 October 2016. Between 6 and 10 October, you may be asked to participate in interview by internet communicators (Skype/Hangout).

The next step for the successful candidate will be recruitment for Life Sciences and Mathematics Interdisciplinary Doctoral Studies (in English) at the University of Gdańsk. The detailed information here: link

This position is available for students from European Union. In the case of the successful candidate resignation or not fulfilling formal requirements, the second candidate from the ranking list will be recruited.