The Utah State University wildlife disease lab is seeking a graduate research assistant or lead technician to join our ungulate-oriented disease and movement lab as part of a nation-wide study of SARS-CoV-2 (“COVID”) dynamics in mule deer. The role could be filled through either a graduate research assistantship or a fully professional position, depending on the desires of the applicant.

Field aspects of the project include (1) developing and implementing a trail camera sampling design to estimate mule deer densities, and (2) coordinating sampling of SARS-CoV-2 and CWD in mule deer. Laboratory and computational aspects of the project include (1) estimating deer densities from the camera-derived data using spatially explicit capture-recapture or similar methods,

(2) coordinating supply purchases, sample shipping, database management, and other project logistics, (3) applying modern movement ecology techniques to assess aspects of deer movement ecology vis a vis transmission of chronic wasting disease and SARS-CoV-2, and (4) working with a national team to quantify SARS-CoV-2 transmission in mule deer. The position will be based in the Department of Wildlife Resources in Logan, Utah, with field sites distributed throughout the state.


  • Bachelor’s degree in wildlife ecology, biology, natural resources, or a related field.
  • A track record of field data collection in remote settings.
  • A strong work ethic and the ability to self-direct when needed.
  • A desire to build new skills in field and analytical aspects of wildlife and disease ecology
  • Good verbal and written communication skills.
  • An ability to work well on teams and take on leader or follower roles as appropriate.
  • An ability to conduct the physical aspects of the work (i.e., hike up to fifteen miles in a day while carrying a heavy pack).
  • A willingness to live remotely for portions of the year (we are considering a rotational camera design that would require that two out of every three weeks be spent on the road during summer for the project’s first three years).
  • An interest in developing computational and statistical skills pursuant to the analysis of wildlife field data.

To apply: Interested parties should send a CV and cover letter to Kezia Manlove ( .  Applicant review will begin on April 10th and we hope to start the position in early May.


Contact Person:  Kezia Manlove; Contact eMail

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