Senior research ecologist, BTO

Application Deadline: 
15 Nov 2019

Senior Research Ecologist

Thetford, Norfolk 

Full time, fixed-term 

£25,390 - £28,212 over 2 years + 11% employer pension contribution


We have an exciting opportunity for you to join the BTO, collating extensive data sets and contributing to our understanding of Europe-African migratory birds. 


Over the next three years the BTO and the University of Durham will undertake a major NERC funded research project entitled “Explaining and Predicting the Migration and Phenology of Europe-African Migratory Birds”. The project is led by Prof Steve Willis (Durham) and Dr Stephen Baillie (BTO) working in close collaboration with Dr Phil Stephens (Durham), Dr James Pearce-Higgins and Dr Chris Hewson (BTO). It will also involve international collaborations with a wide range of universities, research institutes and NGOs with leading involvement in research on avian migration. Much of the work on this project will be undertaken by two post-doctoral researchers, one based at Durham and the other at the BTO. 


The project will address the overarching hypothesis that the migratory routes and strategies of songbirds are largely an outcome of interactions between physiological constraints and patterns of resource availability. Related to this, we hypothesise that these factors will operate, in addition to factors operating during non-migratory periods on the breeding and non-breeding grounds, to account for observed long-term population trends. 


The postholder will undertake the main BTO-based components of this research. Focusing on large scale analyses of migration routes, phenology and body condition, building strong relationships with our extensive network of collaborators and applying cutting edge statistical methods. The work is expected to produce a series of high profile papers and will also provide a key input to simulation model development being undertaken at the University of Durham. We expect the overall project to be highly collaborative with all members of the core team being involved in all of the main project outputs.


Closing date for receipt of applications is 1pm on Friday 15 November.


It is anticipated that interviews will be held in Thetford on Monday 2 December.


For further information and to apply visit our website:  


For an informal chat about the position please call Stephen Baillie on 01842 750050 (or email 


Charity No. 216652 (E&W); SC039193 (Scotland)