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Subject: Postdoctoral Opportunity
From: Paul Moran <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Academic forum on fisheries ecology and related topics <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Fri, 6 Dec 1996 18:20:04 -0800

TEXT/PLAIN (87 lines)

We expect to have a postdoctoral research fellowship in 1997 in the
general field of extinction risk analysis for Pacific salmon.  The
position is in the Conservation Biology Program, Northwest Fisheries
Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), Seattle,
Washington, USA.

The Conservation Biology Program is a multidisciplinary group of 25
professional and technical staff members concerned with the conservation
of anadromous salmonids (Pacific salmon, steelhead, and sea-run cutthroat
trout) in the Pacific Northwest. The program has two major foci:  1) basic
and applied genetic research, and 2) scientific evaluations of Pacific
salmon under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  The Genetics Project is
the oldest fishery genetics program in the country.  Project scientists
use both molecular (allozyme and DNA) and quantitative genetic techniques
to address a variety of problems with conservation relevance.  Endangered
Species Project scientists play the leading role within NMFS in developing
the scientific basis for ESA listing determinations and recovery planning
for Pacific salmon.  Three major objectives of the project are to:  1)
identify appropriate units for conservation; 2) evaluate the risks
(demographic, environmental, and genetic) faced by these conservation
units; and 3) develop and evaluate strategies for rebuilding depleted
populations while conserving healthy ones. Ongoing research activities
within the Conservation Biology Program include population and
conservation genetics of salmon, quantitative genetics, patterns of life
history variation, interactions of hatchery and wild salmon, fluctuating
asymmetry of meristic characters, and extinction risk analysis for salmon

We are looking for a scientist who can help improve the scientific basis
for evaluating extinction risks for anadromous Pacific salmonids.  This is
a very complex topic for several reasons, including:  1) Conservation
units of interest typically include multiple spawning populations, so we
need methods that can evaluate extinction risk for groups of populations
as well as individual populations; 2) Salmon have a complex life history
and perform extensive freshwater and saltwater migrations; as a result,
demographic parameters vary considerably over the life cycle, and
populations are exposed sequentially to a number of different risk
factors; 3) Large scale hatchery programs release fish into the wild,
where they may interact genetically and ecologically with natural
populations; and 4) Harvest of natural and hatchery populations continues
to be an important factor; it generally occurs in mixed-stock fisheries,
where it is difficult to maximize harvest of productive (generally
hatchery) populations without overexploiting less productive (generally
wild) populations.

There are a variety of interesting and challenging research projects that
could be developed to address these and related issues.  Key questions to
address include (but are not necessarily restricted to) the following:  1)
How can extinction risk for conservation units that are a composite of
many local populations best be evaluated?  What if (as is typically the
case with salmon) there is considerable diversity among populations within
a conservation unit (e.g., in ecological, life-history, or genetic
characteristics)?  How do risks to distinctive components of a
conservation unit translate into risk to the unit as a whole?  2) On what
temporal and spatial scales are salmon populations connected by migration
and gene flow?  How does metapopulation structure affect small-population
demographic and genetic risks?  3) How best can the genetic and ecological
risks from hatchery production be factored into an overall risk analysis?
4) What is the best way to evaluate the contribution of large-scale
climatic changes (e.g., decadal-scale cycles in ocean productivity) to
extinction risk for salmon populations, which typically exhibit large
fluctuations in abundance even under favorable conditions?

The postdoctoral position is part of the National Research Council
Research Associateship program; salary is $34,000 U.S. per year.
Requirements:  you must have received a PhD, ScD, or MD degree (or foreign
equivalent) within the last five years, or you must be able to present
evidence of having completed all formal requirements for the degree before
tenure begins. Applicants do not have to be U.S. citizens.  Awards will be
announced in March or April 1997, and tenure could begin soon thereafter.

For more information about this position, contact:
Robin Waples
Conservation Biology Program Manager (206) 860-3254
[log in to unmask]

To obtain forms and/or information about the application process, contact:

Dr. Judith Nyquist
NRC Program Administrator
National Research Council (Rm TJ2114) 2101 Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC  20418
202-334-2202 (voice)
202-334-2759 (FAX)
[log in to unmask]

Application deadline is 15 January 1997.

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