The Marine Mammal and Protected Resources (MMPR) Program in Charleston, South Carolina is recruiting to fill two Dolphin Photo-identification Internship positions for the winter of 2009.
The MMPR is organized within NOAA's National Ocean Service and is located at the Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research (CCEHBR) laboratory in Charleston, SC.
The intern position involves a commitment of 20 hours per week extending over a 15 week period from Monday, January 12, 2009 to Friday, April 24, 2009. There is some flexibility in these start and end times.
Interns will participate in the field and laboratory activities of the Charleston Dolphin Abundance and Distribution Project (CDAD). Three useful sources of information about the CDAD project are:
1) Zolman, E. 2002. Residence patterns of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiopstruncatus) in the Stono River estuary, Charleston County, South Carolina. Marine Mammal Science 18:879-892; and
2) The Charleston Dolphin Abundance and Distribution (CDAD) Project: Standard Operating Protocols (SOP) for Field and Photographic Analysis Procedures; and
3)Speakman, T., E. Zolman, J. Adams, R.H. Defran, D. Laska, L. Schwacke,J. Craigie, and P. Fair. 2006. Temporal and spatial aspects of bottlenose dolphin occurrence in coastal and estuarine waters near Charleston, South Carolina. NOAA Technical Memorandum NOS NCCOS 37.
You can download pdf versions of these documents at the web sites listed below.
The CDAD project carries out boat-based photo-identification surveys in the coastal and inland waterways of the Charleston SC area. This research is designed to provide an understanding of the population characteristics, including temporal and spatial aspects, of the distribution of Charleston area Atlantic bottlenose dolphins.
The internship offers an excellent opportunity for qualified and motivated individuals to obtain field and laboratory training in photo-identification methodology and analysis under the mentorship of experienced dolphin researchers. There is no compensation for this internship position and the successful applicant will be responsible for their living and transportation expenses during the time of the internship. During the internship interns must have a personal vehicle to allow them to travel to and from the laboratory and to some of the local field sites in the Charleston area.
Ideal internship applicants will be advanced undergraduates or a recent graduate of a scientifically oriented university program in the behavioral or biological sciences. A typical applicant should have a strong interest in the scientific study of cetacean behavioral ecology, have potential interests in future graduate study in marine mammal science, and is an individual who seeks extensive and intensive exposure to the field work, data analysis techniques, and research literature in this field. Preference will be given to the selection of interns with well developed computer skills and boat-based field experience.
The internship application will consist of a letter of interest, transcripts of university coursework and two letters of recommendation from professors or research supervisors who are familiar with your scholarship, research skills and work habits. Interested applicants should first correspond with Todd Speakman byemail before preparing and submitting application materials. We anticipate filling this internship position by the first week of December 2008. Interested applicants should correspond by email to Todd Speakman Email: Todd.Speakman@noaa.gov
Zolman .pdf download:
CDAD SOP .pdf download:
Speakman et. al. pdf download: