Birds in Backyards Honours Project

Subject: Birds in Backyards Honours Project
From: Hugo Phillipps <>
Date: Wed, 06 Sep 2000 12:24:30 +1000
Hi everybody -

For your information and opportunity, the notice below.


Honours Project
"Nesting ecology of birds in urban environments"
$20,000 funds available


The Southern NSW and ACT group of Birds Australia is seeking an outstanding
student/supervisor combination to contribute to its Birds in Backyards
research, education and conservation project.  A component of the research
phase of this project is suitable for an honours project in zoology or a
related discipline.


There will be freedom for the student and supervisor to develop/modify the
project, in association with a Birds Australia co-supervisor.  However, the
research must address some pre-defined research objectives.  These
objectives include:

· Determining the species of birds that can use urban areas for nesting.
· Determining the species of bird that use urban areas for feeding, but not
for nesting.
· Investigation of the characteristics of gardens in which different bird
species nest measured at a landscape, garden and nest-site scale.
· Comparing the breeding success of urban areas compared with a natural


It is important for Birds Australia that the results of this research are
published soon after completion of the honours year.  Accordingly, a
proportion of the funding is expected to be used by the supervisor to buy
out teaching, or to otherwise facilitate rapid publication of the research
results by the student, supervisor and Birds Australia Co-supervisor.


Part of the research will involve analysis of data held by ornithological
organisations.  A component of the budget is therefore intended to cover
data costs, as well as fees to an assistant who will liaise with these
organisations and provide the data to the student.

It is anticipated that an important component of the research will involve
the collection of new data by volunteer bird watchers.  The student would
be expected to design and analyse this survey, but funding has been
allocated for an assistant to help with recruitment and supervision of

Because the survey must be performed during the breeding season of most
small passerines (c. September-December) it is envisaged that the project
will be undertaken in a mid-year enrolment.

The geographical scope of the project demands that the student be based in
the greater Sydney region.  Moreover, the Birds in Backyards Project is an
ongoing project and Birds Australia hopes that this honours project may
foster further collaboration with the student and/or supervisor.


Applications consisting of the student's academic record, the supervisor's
CV and a two-page (maximum) statement summarising the strength of the
application should be mailed to:

Kate Ravich,
Birds in Backyards Project
Birds Australia
PO Box 1322

The closing date for applications is 5 January 2001.
Interviews of short-listed candidates will take place in the week beginning
15 January 2001.
The successful applicant will be notified on 19 January 2001.
For more details of the project please contact your Departmental Office or

Kate Ravich:
Tel: (02) 9436 4341

Richard Major:
Tel: (02) 9320 6183

Hugo Phillipps
Communications Coordinator
Birds Australia
415 Riversdale Road
HAWTHORN EAST 3123, Australia
Tel: (03) 9882 2622, fax: (03) 9882 2677
Email: <>
Web site: <>

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