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Postdoctoral or Postgraduate Research Associate: Southeastern freshwater mussel conservation

Expiration Date: 

Description: We seek a postdoctoral or postgraduate (completed PhD or MSc) researcher to help develop a landscape risk-assessment tool to assist US Fish & Wildlife Service biologists evaluate imperilment of southeastern freshwater mussels, while providing analytical support for the formal review of the Coosa Creekshell – a mussel endemic to the Coosa River system (AL, GA). The hired candidate will work directly with Drs. Corey Dunn (US Geological Survey) and Mike Colvin (Mississippi State University), while learning in-demand skills transferable to broader applications in natural resources decision-making. The project will mainly use existing distributional data, but there may be opportunities for fieldwork if supporting project objectives.

Qualifications: Completed graduate degree in natural resources, ecology, or closely related field before start date, and have interest in freshwater conservation. Candidates should have interests in R programming, Geographic Information Systems, species distribution modeling, and communicating research to agency decision makers. The hired candidate must be willing to learn emerging Species Status Assessment methods and work collaboratively with project partners.

Salary and benefits: Two-year position with potential for extension depending on funding and performance. $40,000–50,000 per year (DOE) + retirement, health benefits, support for professional travel.

Start date: Applicant review will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. The position will be readvertised Sept 30, 2021 if unfilled. Start date is flexible but targeted for Oct. 2021–Jan 2022. Telework options may be available.

Apply: Email with the subject line “Mussel postgraduate” to Dr. Corey Dunn ( in a single, merged PDF: (1) 1–2-page cover letter describing experiential background, career goals, and project interest; (2) cv; (3) email addresses and phone numbers for three professional references. We welcome informal inquiries about the position.

MSU is an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, ethnicity, sex, religion, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, pregnancy, gender identity, status as a U.S. veteran, and/or any other status protected by applicable law. We always welcome nominations and applications from women, members of any minority group, and others who share our passion for building a diverse community that reflects the diversity in our student population.


Helpful links: 

Dept. of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Aquaculture:

USGS MS Cooperative F&W Research Unit: