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Postdoctoral Research Associate

Job Description (Posted April 10, 2024)

The WSU Honey Bee Research Program is seeking a postdoctoral researcher to work on research exploring honey bee pest management using entomopathogenic Metarhizium (a sporulating soil fungus) for an eco-friendly, cost-effective varroa mite control. Varroa is a major pest of honey bees and are detrimental to honey bee health and primarily cause colony collapse. Chemical miticides raised concerns about human and pollinator health hazards and adverse environmental impacts. Therefore, beekeeping community actively seeks biopesticides as an alternative solution.

This project aims to investigate the potential of a Metarhizium isolate as a biopesticide to control varroa mites in honey bee colonies. We also aim to select new strains of Metarhizium, more tolerant to higher hive temperature and can effectively kill Varroa mites. This project also involves close collaboration with researchers, extension agents, and commercial beekeeping operations located in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and California.

Required Qualifications:

  • Must hold a PhD degree in a field of entomology, ecology, molecular biology, or other related field.
  • The applicant must have at least one year beekeeping experience, including queen inspection, pest sample collection, and colony health assessment.
  • The applicant must have demonstrated data management and analytical abilities.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience overseeing research throughout all stages, from experimental design through publication of findings
  • Published peer-reviewed articles, scientific reports, and scientific communication
  • Demonstrated grantsmanship
  • Experience in molecular biology and microbial techniques (Ideal candidates will have experience performing molecular laboratory techniques and/or experience researching honey bees (For example, qPCR, microscopy,  microbial strain maintenance and selection, RNAi, or other laboratory techniques useful for studies of pests and/or pathogens and the insect immune system are beneficial. 
  • They will be proficient in statistics and the scientific publication process
  • Must have or be able to obtain a valid driver’s license by time of hire

For any questions about this position, please contact Dr. Brandon Hopkins at