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Responsibilities: The Hellbender Research Fellow reports to the Director of the Ron Goellner Center for Hellbender Conservation. The primary responsibilities of this fellow are to compile data on Hellbenders and create a well-organized data repository, identify gaps in knowledge and future research directions, and assist in the production and publication of several pending center accomplishments. The Ron Goellner Center for Hellbender Conservation, located in the Charles H. Hoessle Herpetarium, is a collaborative effort between the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC), the United States Fish and Wildlife (USFW) and the Saint Louis Zoo. As such, the principle location will be at the Saint Louis Zoo, but may occasionally work at the Missouri Department of Conservation offices. The ideal candidate will be responsible for working with all three organizations and must have excellent time management and interpersonal skills. The successful candidate will have excellent research and writing skills and must have the ability to work independently as well as part of a team. Essential duties include:
- Research hellbender natural history, their threats, habitat, conservation, genetics, health and all aspects of their captive care and create an organized database. Work with USFWS and MDC to compile all existing research by threat category to determine patterns for direct threats, etc
- Work with MDC, USFW and STL animal care staff on the completion of pending manuscripts.
- Compile resources within the database on the conservation and health of each of the MO rivers of focus and work with MDC and USFW on conducting a water shed assessment. Use that information along with information pertaining to the status of each population of hellbenders to assist in the development of an action plan for long-term conservation in each MO river system.
- Assist in the development a list of priority areas for research, identifying collaborators, resources and conservation impacts of each proposed project. Highlight the needs of each river system, the hellbender population and gaps in knowledge for future conservation efforts to focus.
Qualifications: A minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology/Zoology, advanced degree preferred. A competitive applicant will be an individual who is passionate about securing the future for Amphibians and their habitats. Only effective communicators who can contribute to and work with an innovative team will be considered. The applicant requires strong verbal and written communication skills, as well as strong organizational capacity with ability to be flexible. The successful candidate for this position will be required to submit to a criminal background check and drug test.