Field Technician (Moth Surveyor)

University of Stirling


Applications are invited for Field Technician (moth surveyor) to work within a new
inter-disciplinary project “Stakeholder perceptions and socio-ecological consequences of
Treescape Expansion through Planting and Natural colonisation” (TreE_PlaNat). The TreE_PlaNat project (funded by the
UKRI Future of UK Treescapes Programme) is a collaboration comprising ecologists and social
scientists at the Universities of Stirling, Edinburgh and Royal Holloway, and Forest Research,
in partnership with the Woodland Trust and National Forest, charities at the forefront of
practical woodland creation and management activities.

Description of the post: 

During the summer of 2023 we will be conducting ecological surveys to investigate the outcomes
of a range of approaches to woodland expansion, including tree planting and allowing trees to
colonise new areas naturally. The Field Technician will carry out biodiversity surveys (with a
focus on moths) within woodland sites across central England (some of which are part of a
long-term research programme, the WrEN project). This will involve extensive fieldwork
to characterise woodland moth communities. Specifically, the successful applicant will be
required to drive to/from field sites, set up Heath light traps, identify moth specimens in the
field (to Species level) and enter data into spreadsheets. Additionally, the Field Technician
will work as part of a team and contribute to other biodiversity surveys (e.g. for plants) and
to ecological surveys to describe woodland structure, assess woodland condition (e.g. recording
evidence of tree disease) and quantify herbivory damage and predation pressure on insect
herbivores. The work will require lone-working, walking over difficult terrain and carrying
field equipment so it is essential that applicants are reliable and able to work independently.
The Field Technician may also be required to liaise with landowners (e.g. to inform of site
visits in advance).

Essential criteria:

  • Holding a valid driving licence 
  • Ability to work independently (e.g. lone working) 
  • Basic navigational skills (e.g. reading maps, use of GPS) 
  • Experience conducting fieldwork 
  • Good entomological knowledge 
  • Excellent moth species identification skills 
  • Good communication skills; ability to liaise with landowners (e.g. to arrange access
    permission) and with other team members working on the project 

Desirable criteria: 

  • Experience setting up Heath light traps 
  • Experience conducting vegetation surveys, preferably in woodlands 
  • Good IT and data management skills (e.g. proficient use of Microsoft Excel) 

Further details: 

Pay scale: G5:16 (£24,715 per annum).
Closing date: 12th April 2023.
Study area: central England.
Duration: Fixed-term contract for 4 months (approximate dates 15th May – 15th Sep 2023).

Other information: Applicants must have the right to work in the UK. A hire vehicle will be
available for the successful applicant to use if (s)he meets the University’s insurance
eligibility criteria (other applicants would need access to their own vehicle). Transport
expenses (i.e. petrol costs) associated with fieldwork will be covered.

To apply: Email your CV (2 pages max), covering letter (1 page max) stating why you’re
interested in the post and how you meet the specified criteria, and contact details of two
referees to Dr Elisa Fuentes-Montemayor, [email protected].

The deadline for applications is 12th April
2023. Shortlisted applicants will be invited to attend an online interview to take place the
week beginning 24th April 2023. 

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