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Research Specialist - Animal Behavior - Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Jobs & Postdocs
Posted Oct 2
Research Specialist - Animal Behavior - Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

The Derryberry and Tanner labs are seeking a highly motivated individual to join our laboratories as a Research Specialist and Laboratory Manager. This key team member will manage field- and lab-based behavioral research experiments and assist both PIs with mentoring undergraduate students. Work schedule requires weekend availability, and early morning and late evening hours depending on the month of the year. Both labs study the evolution of animal communication, the Derryberry Lab in birds and the Tanner lab in frogs and some acoustically communicating insects. Our laboratories are stimulating and collaborative environments that are part of a growing Animal Behavior Cluster at the University of Tennessee. There will be excellent opportunities to learn behavioral, statistical, and field techniques.

Apply online here:

Duties and responsibilities will include but are not limited to: 

1.       Perform behavioral experiments to support ongoing research projects. 
2.       Analyze, plot, and present experimental results.
3.       Maintain live animal populations for research experiments.
4.       Supervise, train, make work assignments, and mentor undergraduate student researchers.
5.       Organize lab inventory, supplies, and orders.
6.       Maintain compliance with proper safety protocols and record-keeping requirements.
Techniques used in the lab include: 
1.       Behavioral ecology: Performing behavioral experiments on free-living and captive frogs and birds, including operant conditioning,  female choice tests, recording, and sound analyses.
2.       Field ecology: Collecting frogs from the wild for laboratory-based experiments; catching and banding free-living birds.
3.       Animal care: Following IACUC approved protocols and SOPs in daily animal care, including maintaining and cleaning animal enclosures, ensure a safe and secure habitat, and monitor health of animals.
4.       General molecular biology techniques (e.g., DNA/RNA extraction, PCR, gel electrophoresis).
Training will be provided for the necessary laboratory techniques.


1.       Bachelor’s degree in Ecology & Evolution, Animal Behavior, or a related field required (Masters preferred).
2.       Experience in animal behavior research is preferred.
3.       Problem-solving, strong attention to detail, and high levels of organization are required.
4.       Excellent verbal and written communication skills required.
5.       Strong work ethic with the ability to work independently and as part of a team is required.
6.       Proficiency with computer software (e.g., Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Photoshop, Illustrator) is required. 
Please submit a cover letter, resume/CV, and contact information for three references as a single document when applying.


  Research Technical

Primary Location



  Ecology & Evolutionary Biology


Campus/Institute  Knoxville

Job Posting

  Oct 2, 2023, 1:43:06 PM