Fully funded PhD/M.Sc. at Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières
THE IMPACT OF AGRICULTURE PRACTICES ON THE ZOOPLANKTON EGG BANKS OF LARGE RIVER FLOOD PLAINS
The broad aim of this research project is to understand the relationship between land use and zooplankton production in the flood plain of a large river system. We will conduct an extensive sampling of zooplankton living biomass in selected areas of the Lake St. Pierre (Québec, Canada), the largest fluvial lake of the St. Lawrence river system, characterized by contrasted land use (e.g. corn, pasture, forest) in order to assess the relationship with zooplankton production and a gradient of anthropogenic stress. In parallel, we will conduct a series of experiments in the laboratory to assess the potential of the soils collected from the same sites to host duration eggs of zooplankton (e.g. cladoceran ephippia) and we will test in semi-natural condition their survival when exposed to water collected along the perturbation gradient. Our aim is to disentangle the relative effects of the quality of the water from those of the physical structure of the substrate on the production of zooplankton. The successful candidate will conduct both controlled and field experiments at the Aquatic laboratory facility of UQTR and in the flood plain of Lake St. Pierre.
Applicants should have a degree in a discipline related to the project, skills in data analysis, and an affinity for field work. Students with a strong background in both statistics and aquatic ecology will be given priority.
Stipend and application procedure - The Centre for Research on Watershed-Aquatic Ecosystem Interactions (RIVE) at the Université du Québec at Trois-Rivières, in collaboration with the Pôle d’Expertise sur la Plaine d’Inondation du Lac Saint-Pierre, is offering a three-year PhD scholarship with an annual stipend of $21,000 CAD and/or a two-year MSc scholarship with an annual stipend of $15,000 CAD. The RIVE regroups 15 researchers and over 50 graduate students, professionals and postdoctoral researchers working on various environmental issues including water quality, aquatic and terrestrial ecology, and carbon geochemistry. The project will begin in January 2019, or in Mai 2019 at the latest, under the co-supervision of Gilbert Cabana and Andrea Bertolo. Interested students should send a letter of interest, a CV, copies of academic transcripts (unofficial copies are acceptable), and the names of three references to firstname.lastname@example.org