The Aquatic Warbler Acrocephalus paludicola is a threatened bird species breeding in extensive fen mires. Due to habitat loss, its population size declined dramatically over the last 100-150 years. Today, the Aquatic Warbler breeds in isolated patches in Central and Eastern Europe. As a result of the steep decline and population fragmentation, it could be experiencing inbreeding.
The aim of the project is to find out whether the Aquatic Warbler suffers from inbreeding depression. Specifically, using molecular markers (SNPs), I will investigate whether individuals that are more inbred produce offspring of lower quality and number.
The project is financed by a research grant from the National Science Centre in Poland and carried out by Dr. Justyna Kubacka from the Museum and Institute of Zoology in Warsaw.
Fieldwork will be carried out in the Biebrza National Park, Poland. Approximate dates are: May 10-June 15 and June 25 - end of July. Workload will be 6 days a week and about 8 hours a day. Fieldwork will consist of:
We seek 1-3 field assistants with firm experience in blood-sampling of small birds and additional helpers participating in other activities.
An ideal candidate will:
Up to 150 PLN per working day (before tax and insurance), depending on experience and skills. Accommodation, waders and transport to study plots will be covered.