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Research Technician in Wild Rodent Fieldwork

Pathobiology & Population Sciences

Location:  Hawkshead (nr Potters Bar, Herts)
Salary:  £30,191 to £33,576 Per Annum Including London Weighting
Fixed Term / Full Time
Closing Date:  23.59 hours BST on Thursday 26 October 2023
Interview Date:  Thursday 09 November 2023
Reference:  PPS-0222-23

We are seeking a highly motivated field technician to join us at the Royal Veterinary College as part of a new, exciting US-UK collaborative project on viral dynamics in wildlife. 

The post is one of two field technicians that will join the project team. The postholder’s key role will be to lead field activities in Wytham Woods, Oxfordshire, to investigate virus transmission dynamics among wild rodents across temporal and spatial scales. The data generated from the fieldwork will contribute to developing and optimising new methods for inferring epidemiological dynamics, and advancing fundamental understanding of how viruses circulate in wild rodent populations. The ideal candidate will have an undergraduate or masters degree in ecology, infectious diseases, or wildlife animal health and experience undertaking small mammal fieldwork. Interested individuals with vocational qualifications or school education to a standard grade with relevant work experience (2-3 years)  will also be considered. 

The postholder will be responsible for day-to-day organisation and running of field activities. Specifically, they will trap wild rodents, collect non-invasive samples and morphometric data, and manage a set of RFID loggers to track spatial movements and social networks, using a well-established capture-mark-recapture study. They will also take a leading role in curation of the resulting data and samples, and support maintenance of field equipment. 

Individuals with a Home Office personal licence for rodent work are especially encouraged to apply, although this is not essential and full training in all required techniques will be provided. Excellent organisation and communication skills, and the ability to work as part of a team is essential. The field technician will work in close collaboration with Dr Jayna Raghwani at RVC, Dr Sarah Knowles at the University of Oxford, and Dr Christina Faust at the University of Glasgow. While the main task will be leading and supporting UK-based fieldwork, they will be embedded within a highly collaborative and international team with expertise spanning virus genomics, wildlife disease ecology, and social network analyses.

Part-time (e.g. 70-80% FTE) arrangements are also feasible for the right candidate. 

We offer a generous reward package and benefits including:

  • Competitive and attractive pension package
  • Generous 30 days annual leave (plus bank holidays + concessionary days)
  • A range of family friendly policies, including adoption, maternity and paternity pay and leave
  • On site café and restaurant 
  • Free membership to the Hawkshead Campus Fitness and Wellbeing Centre located on site (gym, badminton, climbing wall, Zumba, yoga and Pilates classes included)
  • Cycle to work scheme
  • Free mini-bus service to and from Potters Bar station and Hawkshead Campus

If you have any questions or would like an informal chat about the role, please contact Dr Jayna Raghwani 


Further details:    Job Description     Person Specification     Conditions of Employment    
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We promote equality of opportunity and diversity within the workplace and welcome applications from all sections of the community.

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