Postdoctoral Research Program, Research Scientist, SE-RES-01 Term, Freshwater Spatial Ecology Program, Fisheries & Oceans Canada – Pacific Region

The Freshwater Spatial Ecology Program is seeking a Postdoctoral Fellow for a 2.5 year project on the development, validation, and application of environmental DNA (eDNA)-based tools to fill critical knowledge gaps on freshwater habitat use for management of Chinook and coho in the Fraser River basin of British Columbia. The Postdoctoral Fellow will sample eDNA and eRNA across a full life history cycle at multiple stream sites in coordination with hatcheries for Chinook and coho. Samples will be processed using multiple methods including qPCR, metabarcoding, and Next Generation Sequencing to develop recommendations for estimating abundances. Newly developed eDNA/eRNA methods will then be applied to evaluate juvenile habitat use in combination with modeled suitable habitat and landscape stressors provided by the Freshwater Spatial Ecology Program. The Postdoctoral Fellow will be expected to lead small field and lab teams, collect and process eDNA/eRNA samples, maintain a clean eDNA lab space, conduct statistical analyses, and write manuscripts on results and an end-user guide on recommended field and lab methods. The position will be supported part-time by an aquatic sciences technician and other staff, and will work with a collaborative team of DFO experts in spatial ecology and ecological genetics.

This Postdoctoral position is pending funding commitments that will be confirmed Spring 2022. However, we encourage interested candidates to apply in advance to ensure the successful candidate can begin before important fieldwork dates commence Fall 2022.

POSITION DETAILS: The position will be based at the Pacific Science Enterprise Centre in West Vancouver, British Columbia. Remote field work will be required with 1-2 day trips up to every two weeks during critical time periods and otherwise up to every 1-2 months for the first year, followed by several trips in the summer of the second year. The salary range for a Postdoctoral Research Scientist (SE-RES-01) is $60,333 to $81,758. The planned start date is August 1, 2022 and end date is March 31,


Official Language Requirement: English

Graduation within the last three years with an acceptable doctoral degree from a recognized postsecondary institution in a field of natural sciences with a specialization in Genomics and Molecular Biology.
• Experience in planning and conducting research.
• Experience in working with a team of researchers or support staff.
• Experience in a molecular genetics laboratory setting, conducting DNA and/or RNA extractions, and performing conventional PCR and/or qPCR.
• Experience in planning and conducting fieldwork.

• Molecular genetics:
• Ability to use molecular genetics laboratory equipment including PCR, Fluorescence plate reader, Bioanalyzer, and/or MiSeq machines.
• Ability to conduct qPCR and/or Next Generation Sequencing.
• Productivity / Recognition: Recognized achievement in the form of authorship and editorship of published or unpublished reports, books, papers, peer-reviewed scientific journals or other communications resulting from operational research and scientific analysis.

• Showing initiative and being action-oriented
• Judgement
• Working effectively with others


• Knowledge of environmental DNA methods and/or applications.
• Knowledge of freshwater ecology and/or Pacific Salmon biology.

• Experience with environmental DNA extraction, qPCR targeted species detection, and/or metabarcoding.
• Experience in bioinformatics of Next Generation Sequencing data using bash, Python, and/or R.
• Experience planning and conducting research on environmental DNA.
• Experience planning and conducting freshwater and/or remote fieldwork.

• Reliability security clearance.
• Class 5 drivers license.
• Work overtime as required.
• Work over long periods in the field conducting research in adverse weather and in remote locations.
• All employees of the core public administration are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and attest to their vaccination status unless accommodated based on a medical contraindication, religion, or another prohibited ground for discrimination as defined under the Canadian Human Rights Act.

• Willingness and ability to travel to remote locations within British Columbia.
• Willingness and ability to work overtime on short notice, including weekends.

CONTACT: Candidates can contact Dr. Josephine Iacarella for more information
( Interested candidates should submit their application through the Canadian Government Postdoctoral Research Program and notify Dr. Iacarella by April 30th, 2022 of their submission.