Montana State University seeks Post Doc Ecological Statistician

Job Close Date: 
September 23, 2016 - 7:00am

This is a non-tenure track, professional position that will work in collaboration with the US Geological Survey (Dr. Kathi Irvine), Montana State University (Dr. Andrea Litt), the National Park Service (Dr. Tom Rodhouse) and their partners to provide robust statistical inferences based on bat acoustic survey data. Results will provide information for the monitoring and conservation of North American bats.

The North American Bat Monitoring Program (NABat) has been developed to support coordinated monitoring of bat populations across North America. The monitoring program uses automated recording devices deployed for multiple nights. There is a need for guidance on the workflow for analyses of the resulting acoustic data as well as on how to account for species misidentification within occupancy models and how to properly account for the inherent uncertainty in the acoustic data.

The successful applicant will:
1. Support NABat implementation and delivery by analyzing the acoustic survey pilot data that has been collected and take a lead in the following activities, as well as the resulting manuscripts and reports:

a. Develop a work flow process for acoustic classifications of bat calls to species, which also identifies the possible sources of uncertainty. Workflow should account for multiple software options used for auto-classification, in addition to hand-vetting of call files. Summarize current knowledge and procedures used by NABat and their partners.

b. Explore current Bayesian occupancy models to account for species classification errors based on acoustic data. Provide guidance on the use of such methods for practitioners, as applied to acoustic bat datasets with accompanying code and worked examples. Depending on the outcome of this work, develop an extension to current methodology, if necessary.

2. Assist USGS and NPS, as needed, with developing guidance on master sample implementation of NABat.

Required Qualifications:
1. PhD in Statistics or Ecology with statistics emphasis.

2. Strong research experience in developing and applying Bayesian statistics.

3. Understanding of occupancy modeling, sampling design and ecology.

4. Documented success publishing in peer-reviewed literature.

Preferred Qualifications:
1. Experience in ecological applications or at least some exposure to ecological fields of study or related course work.

2. Previous experience with bat research and/or acoustic data a plus, but not required

3. Excellent written and oral communication skills.

4. A strong work ethic and the ability to work independently as well as collaborate with diverse partners and practitioners

Salary range of $40,000 to $45,000 annually, commensurate with experience, education, and qualifications.

For more information or to apply, please submit a cover letter and CV here: