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Research assistant, Mbeli Bai Gorilla Study
Wildlife Conservation Society - Congo Program
We are looking for a field assistant for an ongoing study on the demographics, behaviour, and visiting patterns of western lowland gorillas at Mbeli Bai, Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park, Republic of Congo (Congo-Brazzaville).
Responsibilities include the daily monitoring (>10hours) of gorillas and other large mammals (forest elephants, sitatungas, forest buffaloes) visiting the Mbeli Bai forest clearing. Further responsibilities include camp logistics, food orders, helping in training of Congolese research assistants.
Essential requirements are high resistance to working for a long period in a remote rain forest, experiences in collecting behavioral data, and the ability to work in a small team (1 ex-pat, 2-3 Congolese research assistants and 3 local assistants). This also means living on basic food and having limited email access (no internet and no telephone calls). Field-work requires a lot of patience because in contrary to following a habituated group we wait for the animals to visit the clearing which means that there can be hours and sometimes days without gorillas in the bai (but there will always be many flies!!!). Therefore the work demands high motivation and patience. Previous experience in individual identification of primates is of high advantage and applicants have to be prepared for a 3-month learning period of the large visiting population of more than 130 gorillas. This also means that applicants are expected to spend at least 1 year at the site.
Practical and technical skills required to maintain the camps technical infrastructure (eg. solar electricity, satphone, sw-radio) are of advantage. For communication with local assistants (Bangombe pygmies) and Congolese research assistant, basic skills in French and/or Lingala are required and candidates with such skills will be highly preferred.
No salary provided but ALL costs associated with the successful completion of the position will be covered.
provided for internship/volunteer positions (travel, meals, lodging):
The project will cover costs of visa, vaccinations and expenses for international flights up to $2,000. This money will be reimbursed only AFTER SUCCESSFUL COMPLETION of a 12-month term of appointment.
The project will cover all costs in Congo as well as domestic flights, food and accommodation in individual lodging (wooden houses) at the field site. Expenses for food and lodging during the stay in Brazzaville will also be covered by the project. Expenses for private field equipment, medical supplies and insurance can NOT be covered by the project.
Term of Appointment:
12 months (starting in July 2014)
15th May 2014
Please provide a CV and a cover letter.
We will be looking for a second applicant later in the year (November-December 2014). If you are not available in July but would like to commit to the study later, you can mention it in your application.
As we receive many applications and have very limited internet and time, it is difficult for us to respond to each applicant individually. Consider your application unsuccessful if you donít hear from us by the end of June.
For additional information on the study site, have a look at:
Avenue Charles de Gaule 151
Brazzaville BP 14537
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