Postdoctoral Associate in Natural Resources
Cornell University
United States

Postdoctoral Associate- Natural Resources

Postdoctoral Associate

Camera Trap Design and Occupancy of Mammals in NY

Natural Resources

Ithaca NY

Position Summary:  

The Fuller Spatial Ecology and Decision Science Lab at the New York Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at Cornell University is seeking candidates for a postdoctoral position to estimate occupancy of mammal species in New York and to design a state-wide camera trapping study utilizing community science (possibly paired with systematic sampling) and integrating existing camera trap efforts within the state. The work is in cooperation with the New York Mammal Survey (NYMS), the first statewide assessment of the distribution and status of New York’s terrestrial and freshwater mammals. The NYMS will guide environmental planning and conservation for mammals in New York, some of which are endangered or declining. The candidate will work to extend the iSeeMammals project to collect data on terrestrial and freshwater mammals in New York to support the NYMS. Depending on expertise, the candidate will work with a team currently developing a machine learning model to classify camera trap images. Occupancy models will be developed using two existing camera trap datasets at >1,000 sites (i.e., >600 sites surveyed 6 years + >450 sites surveyed 4 years). The candidate is encouraged to develop additional research questions using the camera trap data sets. There will be opportunities to mentor and collaborate with graduate students in the lab. The candidate will be expected to develop manuscripts for submission in peer-reviewed journals and communicate research to project partners. The candidate will be supervised by Dr. Angela Fuller, U. S. Geological Survey, NY Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, at Cornell University (Ithaca, New York). The postdoc will work closely with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and project leads of the NYMS at SUNY ESF and the New York Natural Heritage Program.

Minimum Requirements:                                                                               

Ph.D. in ecology, wildlife biology, conservation biology, natural resources, statistics, or a related quantitative field.  Strong mathematical and programming skills, experience in statistical estimation and simulation modeling and use of R. Previous experience with occupancy modeling. Knowledge of animal ecology. Experience with camera trapping studies and analyzing camera trap data. Demonstrated desire and proven ability to publish in peer-reviewed journals. Excellent writing and personal communication skills. The ability to work independently and under limited supervision as well as collaboratively.

Desired Qualifications: Previous experience in app development, designing or leading community science projects, machine learning applications classifying camera trap images.

Position length: 1 year at a time appointment up to 17-month appointment with end date not to exceed July 31, 2022. There is a possibility of extension, pending additional funding and available work.

SALARY: ~$53,000/year plus benefits (health and dental insurance, retirement, life insurance, disability)   

START DATE: As soon as possible      

How to Apply:

Anticipated start date as soon as possible. Application describing your background and experiences and responding to each of the requirements and qualifications, the names and contact information for three references, and 2-3 relevant papers. a statement of contribution to diversity, equity, and inclusion should be submitted to the Department of Natural Resources  

Applications will be accepted until this position is filled.

Employment Assistance:

If you require an accommodation for a disability in order to complete an employment application or to participate in the recruiting process, you are encouraged to contact Cornell University's Department of Inclusion and Workforce Diversity at voice (607) 255-3976, fax (607) 255-7481, or email at

For general questions about the position or the application process, please contact the Recruiter listed in the job posting.

Applicants that do not have internet access are encouraged to visit your local library, or local Department of Labor. You may also visit the office of Workforce Recruitment and Retention Monday - Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. to use a dedicated workstation to complete an online application.

Notice to Applicants:

Please read the required Notice to Applicants statement by clicking here. This notice contains important information about applying for a position at Cornell as well as some of your rights and responsibilities as an applicant.

EEO Statement:

Diversity and Inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We are a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities. We also recognize a lawful preference in employment practices for Native Americans living on or near Indian reservations. Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students, and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose, and contribute creative ideas to further the university's mission of teaching, discovery, and engagement.

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