Two Master of Science (MSc) positions are available at Auburn University (start date: January 2024). The students will be hosted by the Aquatic Reproductive Physiology lab (P.I. Dr. Ian Anthony Ernest Butts) in the School of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences (SFAAS). In terms of research, our labs long-term objectives are to support the development of sustainable aquaculture, fisheries management, and conservation biology.

To accomplish this, we take an interdisciplinary approach to test hypotheses in reproductive biology and hatchery science of aquatic organisms, with the goal of understanding and controlling processes that impact gamete quality and early offspring performance (egg to first-feeding larval stage). Responsibilities and tasks Largemouth bass (LMB) is a high-value freshwater aquaculture species with a rapidly expanding food fish market in North America.

Yet, current rearing practices depend on uncontrollable pond-based technologies plagued by high mortality, especially during the early life stages (i.e., egg to early fingerlings). As such, complete indoor intensive culture of LMB would improve production yields by circumventing the high rates of mortality associated with these initial pond stages. In these LMB projects the students will develop intensive indoor rearing strategies for LMB during critical early life stages.

To accomplish this goal, the students will use basic and applied research to gain a better understanding of developmental, physiological, and molecular functions associated with development of LMB. Specific studies will focus on optimizing environmental factors (i.e., light regimens), tank design, and feeding conditions. Overall, the students will be expected to conduct broad research followed by the writing of a detailed thesis.

Qualifications: We are looking for motivated candidates who have: • Bachelor’s degree in biology or similar discipline • Knowledge of aquaculture and fish physiology • Proven ability to carry out goal-oriented work and fluent with data management systems (i.e., Excel, Word, statistical analysis) • Lab competences in molecular biology and/or physiology would be considered an asset – please clarify your experiences in the “motivating letter”

• Practical husbandry experiences with aquatic organisms will be an asset • Good co-operation ability • IMMEDIATE: Ability to obtain US driver’s license and vehicle, as our research station is off campus Approval and Enrollment This graduate appointment is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in the MSc program within the School of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences (SFAAS).

Applications must be e-mailed to  as “one” pdf file containing all materials to be given consideration. The file must include: • Cover letter motivating the application (please include your background, interests, goals) • Curriculum vitae with contact information (e-mail and phone numbers) for three referees • Unofficial transcripts and GRE scores. The students will begin coursework and research in Jan 2024. Application Please submit your application no later than 1 October 2023 at 11:59 PM CDT.

For information about our program please see:  Salary and appointment terms These projects will be carried out at the E.W. Shell Fisheries Center, which is situated in Auburn, Alabama ( ). Typically, a tuition waiver is provided.

Contact Person: Ian Butts, eMail

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