2 master thesis opportunities for national (Ecuadorian) or international students

We have 2 master thesis opportunities for national (Ecuadorian) or international students interested to work on the deep-sea benthic invertebrate communities in the Galapagos Marine Reserve. The thesis would be developed in collaboration with the student’s university advise.

Research topics:

– Baseline study assessing the composition of deep-sea benthic invertebrate communities in the GMR
– Ecological and social values of deep-sea invertebrate communities in the GMR

Project background

Since 2015 the Charles Darwin Research Station, in collaboration with various deep-sea expedition cruises and research institutes, embarked on the first research project dedicated to study seamount ecosystems in the Galapagos Marine reserve.  More than 20 previously unchartered seamounts were explored through the use of ROVs and manned submersibles totaling close to one hundred seamount dives. Apart from the 500 biological samples that were collected during those cruises, over 200 hours of video transects and 40.000 pictures were shot across all documented seamounts.

The Charles Darwin Foundation (CDF) is looking for a graduate student in marine sciences to undertake a thesis project as part of our Seamounts Project in collaboration with the university MSc program of the student. During their time here the student will be an important member of the Seamounts Project, whose objective is to assist in the first ever comprehensive ecological and social characterization of deep-sea communities across numerous seamounts inside the Galapagos Marine Reserve (GMR). Their research project will involve undertaking a baseline study of benthic invertebrate biodiversity, focusing primarily on the dominant communities groups such as cnidarians, poriferas?etc. Part of their research could involve analyzing image and video transects recorded between 400-2000m depth, identifying deep-sea organisms, undertaking statistical analysis, genetic analysis, studying economic and social aspects of seamounts, and technical writing. The student will also partake in t
he Seamount Project’s outreach campaigns with local communities and other communications activities. This is a unique opportunity to be part of the first deep-sea baseline study of seamounts in the GMR and the discovery of deep-sea species that are very likely new to science. Moreover, the student will have the opportunity to work with a team of international scientists, and experience life on an island community inside one of the most unique marine reserves.




Best regards,

Salome Buglass, MSc
Marine Ecologist – Ec?loga Marina
Charles Darwin Foundation – Fundaci?n Charles Darwin

Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz Island
Gal?pagos – Ecuador
Office Phone: (+593)-5-2526-146/147

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