PhD Scholarship - Biology, ecology & impact of giant pine scale, Marchalina hellenica, in Australia

Opportunity Type: 
Closing Date: 
Sunday, September 30, 2018

Giant pine scale, Marchalina hellenica (Hemiptera: Marchalinidae), was detected in Australia simultaneously in suburban Melbourne and Adelaide in October 2014. An eradication attempt was made, but was not successful. Consequently, a transition to management program is currently underway.There is a need to gather data on the biology and ecology of the insect in Australia to assist in ongoing plantation management. I am seeking a suitable candidate to conduct field-based research on: population structure, seasonal phenology, insect performance and host impact.

Essential qualifications & skills.

(i) overall Honours mark ≥ 86% [inc. thesis mark > 85%] or same Hons-equivalent
(ii) strong background in forest entomology, insect-plant interactions &/or insect population ecology
(iii) driver’s licence
(iv) willingness to work with pine plantation foresters & research managers
(v) adherence to quarantine restrictions
(vi) high motivation & capacity to publish/disseminate your findings
(vii) willingness to provide annual reports on progress to plantation owners & funding body.

Support & funding.

A scholarship of $30,000 p.a. tax-free & associated entitlements from plantation owners and Forest & Wood Products Australia Limited (FWPA) for 3.5 years will be provided. Stipulation that preference is given to Australian residents or citizens. $5,000 p.a. operating funds for research costs from plantation owners & FWPA. Scholarship requires annual written report to plantation owners & FWPA. PhD candidature to be administered by the Graduate Research School, La Trobe University. An RTP Fees Offset Scholarship will be provided with an offer of candidature.

Expressions of interest & CV/resumé, inc. names of two academic referees, by email to A/Prof. Steinbauer. In your email, include a description of your research interests and why you are interested in joining the research group as well as a summary of your prior research experience and your academic background, e.g. relevant coursework.

Contact Person: Associate Professor Martin Steinbauer Mailing Address: Department of Ecology, Environment & Evolution, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Victoria 3084 Telephone: (03) 9479 1672 E-mail: