Dr. Harold Zald (http://www2.humboldt.edu/fwr/faculty/detail/harold_zald) and Dr. Kerry Byrne (http://www.kmbyrne.net/) are seeking a highly motivated student interested in joining the Forest Measurements and Ecology Lab (http://zaldforestlab.weebly.com) to pursue an MS degree in Forestry and Wildland Resources at Humboldt State University (http://humboldt.edu/fwr/program/graduate_degrees). The selected student will collect and analyze field and lab data to quantify mortality of large old-growth Sugar (Pinus lambertiana) and Jeffery (PInus jefferyi) pines in response to a large catchment scale prescribed fire scheduled for Fall 2020 in an old-growth mixed conifer forest in the southern Sierra Nevada of California. The project will occur at Teakettle Experimental Forest (http://teakettle.ucdavis.edu/index.htm), a 1300 ha old-growth, mixed-conifer forest 80 km east of Fresno, CA in the southern Sierra Nevada. Field duties will include performing a census of large pine trees within the watershed, collecting field observations on tree vigor and duff depth, collecting duff and soil cores for root analysis, and establishing an experiment to determine the efficacy of duff raking in mitigating large pine mortality. Laboratory work will include processing duff and soil core samples to quantify bulk density and root biomass. Selected student must be able to work independently and in team settings, thrive in adverse field conditions, and be willing to camp for extended periods of time during the field season. The facilities at Teakettle are rustic due to the remote location of the station. The cabin has solar power, bathrooms, a kitchen and common space; individual will spend the summer sleeping in tents. The nearest town for supplies is Shaver Lake, CA, approximately a 1-hour drive from the field station.
Strong candidates for admission to the HSU Department of Forestry and Wildland Resources Graduate Program should have a grade point average of 3.0 or greater on a 4.0 scale for all college and university work, and GRE scores in the top 50th percentile (>152 Verbal, >153 Quantitative, >4 Writing). Minimum qualifications include a BS degree completed no later than June 2020 in Forestry, Forest Ecology, Ecology, or related fields. Additional minimum qualifications include:
MS student will be hired as a full time field research assistant beginning in June 2020 at $17.46/hr. During the academic year, the student will have a salary of $17.46/hr for up to 20 works per week. The project has funding for at least 2 years, with the second year of funding conditional on satisfactory student academic standing and project progress. Additional funding opportunities may exist to teach lab sections of Forest Measurements and Forest Restoration classes taught by Dr. Zald. MS student will supervise at least one undergraduate field and lab assistant supporting field data collection and laboratory sample processing.
How to Apply
Applicants are being considered to begin field work in June 2020 and enroll in graduate school fall semester of 2020. To apply, send the following (as a single PDF document) to Dr. Harold Zald (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Dr. Kerry Byrne (email@example.com):
Students who do not have a previous degree in forestry are eligible for admission to the Department of Forestry and Wildland Resources graduate program. However, students who are admitted may be required to take prerequisite undergraduate forestry courses (e.g. forest mensuration, silviculture, etc.)
If you have any questions or concerns regarding the application process, please contact Harold Zald at firstname.lastname@example.org
Link to Teakettle Website:
The Byrne lab has been busy this fall with 2 new seedbank germination studies. See a few photos below of Allison and Sarah transplanting some of their germinated seedlings for future identification (part of the ORIDE project), and Sean taking photos of his samples for his senior Capstone (soils from Lanphere Dunes).
Check out the "People" section of the website to read more about our new graduate student, Allison, and a few ESM undergraduates working in the lab this semester!
Dr. Byrne is giving a talk for the North Coast Chapter of the California Native Plant Society next week. See the flyer here. If you live locally you are welcome to attend!
We had a great field crew this summer! Allison, Ethan, and Beth worked in Klamath Falls for about 4 weeks collecting data on the ongoing Applegate's milkvetch project, then spent a week at the ORIDE project (along with PI Kerry, Jules lab grad student Andres, and senior ESM student Sean) to do a week of intense ANPP/species composition sampling at ORIDE. Thanks to everyone for their hard work and positive attitudes! We finished sampling in record time. All photos below taken by Bethany Rouse.
Dr. Byrne (not pictured), new lab graduate student Allison, HSU Environmental Science and Management (ESM) senior Ethan, and newly minted ESM graduate Beth headed up to Klamath Falls, OR to begin about 5 weeks of field work on 2 projects: long term monitoring of native Astragalus applegatei (Applegate's milkvetch) individuals, and assessing the impacts of extended drought on plant community composition and community structure in the sagebrush steppe (see lab research for more information). Thanks for all of your hard work, team!
Congratulations to Sean Stewart, who won a research scholarship from Northern California Botanists for his proposed research to conduct a seed bank germination study at Lanphere Dunes; comparing areas that have been invaded by yellow bush lupine to areas that have never been invaded by yellow bush lupine, to areas that have been restored from yellow bush lupine invasion. Sean will be testing seed bank germination methods this summer, and conducting his Capstone research project fall semester.
Sean hard at work setting up plots at Lanphere Dunes in Feb 2019
Congratulations to Aaron Miller, graduating Oregon Tech Environmental Science senior, who won the Outstanding Non-Traditional Student Award for the 2019 graduating class at Oregon Tech. Aaron worked as a research technician in my lab at Oregon Tech in Summer 2016, he conducted an independent research project in spring/summer 2017, and continued to work occasionally on the ORIDE project as recently as last fall.
Congratulations, too, to Allison Young, graduating Oregon Tech Biology Health Science senior, who won the President's Senior Cup Outstanding Student Award for the 2019 graduating class at Oregon Tech. Allison conducted an independent research project in my lab in Spring 2017, then worked as a research technician in the lab over the summer (2017).
I was so lucky to have the opportunity to work with these students over the past few years and I wish them both the best as they graduate and start their careers (Aaron as a natural resources manager with the Forest Service, and Allison is beginning pharmacy school at University of Washington in the fall). Congratulations, Aaron and Allison!
Are you a plantophile? Do you love spending time outdoors and traveling to new places? We are currently looking for two enthusiastic research assistants to help out with field work and some lab work this summer. You would work and live in Klamath Falls, OR (housing provided). See attached flyer for more information!