2 Sternberg / Ferriera

Project title: Parasite infections in free-ranging carnivores

Research group and address: Department for Evolutionary Ecology, Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (IZW), Alfred-Kowalke-Straße 17, 10315, Berlin, Germany
Supervisors: Dr. Marion East, Dr. Bettina Wachter, Prof. Heribert Hofer
Contact for further information:

Project description:

The post of student assistant will be based at the IZW. The research will focus on key factors influencing parasite infections in wild carnivores and will contribute to on-going long-term research on:

  • Spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta) in the Serengeti National Park, in Tanzania
  • Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) on commercial farmland in Namibia

The successful applicant will assist with immunological, physiological and parasitological analyses of samples from both projects, such as parasite egg counts in faeces, screening blood smears for parasites, conducting differential white blood cell counts, isolating peripheral blood mononuclear cells and running enzyme immune assays. The post provides the opportunity to: (i) learn advanced immunological methods and assist in validating and troubleshooting these methods; (ii) learn how to manage large sample banks and gain insights into the design and organisation of large datasets and; (iii) obtain practical skills in handling sensitive biological samples. The successful applicant will work in a multi-disciplinary team of experienced and dedicated scientists, students and technicians.

Applicants are expected to be highly motivated, have a good knowledge of English and an interest in parasitology, eco-immunology, evolution, ecology and life-history theory.


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