mardi 16 avril 2013

Field Researchers - Wild Barbary macaques in Morocco

Hiring Organization:
Schoolof Psychology, University of Lincoln

Date Posted:

Position Description:
I am looking for two researchers to work on a new study on the potential effect that between-group competition has on within-group social behaviour in wild Barbary macaques (Macaca sylvanus). This study is funded by a grant from the Leakey Foundation and it is run in collaboration with Dr. Andrew Radford (University of Bristol, UK). Our aim is to test, in wild macaques, the hypothesis that between-group competition elicits within-group affiliation and it reduces within-group aggression. This hypothesis is supported by work on humans (e.g. Choi & Bowles 2007; Puurtinen & Mappes 2009) and birds (Radford 2008, 2001) but scarce data exist on non-human primates (Cheney 1992). 

The data collection for this study, lasting approximately 11 months, will focus on three wild groups of macaques and it will involve the use of playback experiments and behavioural sampling techniques. We will use calls of unfamiliar monkeys to simulate inter-group encounters and to observe the behaviour of the study animals. This study is part of a longitudinal project on the socio-ecology of the Barbary macaque started in January 2007 (for more information about the field site and work in Morocco, please visit our website/blog:

Work at the field site is physically and mentally demanding. The field site is between 1,400 and 2,000 m a.s.l. and weather conditions can vary dramatically across the year, with temperature ranging between 35ºC to -5ºC and snow in the winter months. Hence, interested individuals should be physically fit. The field site is in the beautiful cedar and oak forest of the Atlas Mountains and it is close to the Moroccan imperial cities of Fez and Meknes.
The successful applicant will live in the town of Azrou in an apartment block with basic amenities including internet access, hot water and TV.

The main responsibilities of this position are:
1) Individually ID the monkeys in three groups;
2) Run playback experiments and collect focal and scan sampling data on the animals;
3) Entering data in an electronic forma for the analyses.

Previous field experience (not necessarily with primates) is essential. 

Applicants should:
• Have a background and strong interest in animal behaviour, with an emphasis on primates and/or social behaviour.
•Have experience of running playback experiments and collect behavioural data.
• Be prepared for long days in the field in a challenging environment. 
• Be open-minded and independent, prepared to adapt to living in a foreign culture, and able to work as part of a team.
• Being able to speak French/Arabic would be an advantage
• A valid driving license and good English are essential requirements for this post.

Funding is available for the two researchers but the exact amount will be negotiated based on the experience of the candidates.

Support provided for internship/volunteer positions (travel, meals, lodging):
The researchers will be responsible for their own health insurance. The living costs will be covered by the grant.

Term of Appointment:
These two positions are for a maximum of 11 months, starting as soon as possible but no later that 1st June 2013.

Application Deadline:
5th May 2013

To apply please send an email to me ( with attached: a 2-page cover letter discussing your suitability for this position, your CV, and the contact details of two academic referees.

Contact Information:
Brayford Pool
Lincoln LN6 7TS
United Kingdom

Telephone Number:

Fax Number:


E-mail Address: