poniedziałek, 22 lipca 2019

PhD position

PhD position - Museum and Institute of Zoology, Polish Academy of Sciences

We are looking for highly motivated PhD student to participate in the project: “Adaptations and ongoing co-evolution: the case of source and reintroduced populations of obligatory myrmecophilous butterfly Maculinea teleius”. The project will be carried out at the Museum and Institute of Zoology, Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw, Poland under supervision of dr Magdalena Witek and dr Luca P. Casacci. The project is financed by the National Science Centre, which ensures a PhD student with a monthly tax-free research stipend of 4500 PLN for three years.

Project description: Myrmica ants are the hosts of many organisms of various taxa, including socially parasitic Maculinea butterflies whose larvae complete their development inside ant nests. In 1990 a successful reintroduction of Maculinea teleius was performed in the Netherlands where Polish butterflies were translocated. Such difference of almost 30 butterfly generations between the source Polish and the reintroduced Dutch population offers unique opportunity to study the local adaptations of M. teleius butterflies to their host ants and to detect ongoing co-evolution processes between parasite and host populations. We plan to study genetic structure of M. teleius source and reintroduced populations. Also, morphometric parameters of adult butterflies will be analysed. To test adoption and survival success of M. teleius larvae coming from different populations we will perform behavioral experiments in the laboratory. We will study cuticular hydrocarbons (CHC) profiles of M. teleius larvae and their Myrmica host ants.

Requirements: Successful candidates should have a Master’s degree in Biology /Ecology. The candidate should have a strong background in evolutionary biology and animal behaviour. Experience in behavioural ecology of invertebrates (mostly social insects and/or butterflies), genetic or CHC profile analysis and statistics will be an additional asset. The candidate should have very good oral and written communication skills in English.

Work description: Successful candidate will collect field data, perform genetic analysis of microsatellites, analysis of morphological traits of adult Maculinea butterflies, CHC profiles of ants and butterfly larvae and perform behavioural experiments. The study will be carried out within international team and data will be collected in Poland, Netherland and Romania. CHC chemical profiles will be analysed in Paris University (at prof. Patrizia d’Ettorre’s laboratory). The PhD student will be guided by members of our team and encouraged to develop own ideas.

Application: The candidates are asked to contact dr Magdalena Witek (mwitek@miiz.waw.pl) attaching a single PDF file with: 1) a cover letter describing the motivation and research experiences, 2) CV 3) copy of MSc certificate and 4) names and contact details of two references.

Deadline for applications is 25th August, 2019.

1.   In the first stage, selected candidates will be contacted by e-mail to define a date for interview which will take place at Museum and Institute of Zoology, in Warsaw or eventually by skype. 

2.    In the second stage (middle of September 2019) the successful candidate will take part in the exam of the BioPlanet Doctoral School (http://szkoladoktorska-bioplanet.pl/en/home/).
3.    Starting date: 1st October, 2019

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