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PhD Scholarship in Marine Coastal Habitats, Denmark
Deadline for application: April 30, 2014

A PhD Scholarship in Marine Coastal Habitats is available at the National Institute of Aquatic Resources (DTU Aqua) with starting date August 2014. The scholarship is financed by the Danish National Recreational Fisheries Program.

The project will primarily be carried out in affiliation to the Section for Ecosystem-based Management which is situated in Charlottenlund, Denmark. DTU Aqua is an institute at the Technical University of Denmark. 

The purpose of DTU Aqua is to provide research, advice and education at the highest international level within the sustainable exploitation of living marine and freshwater resources, the biology of aquatic organisms and the development of ecosystems as well as their integration in ecosystem-based management. The institute has an international research staff comprising approx. 120 academic employees.

Project description
Shallow coastal systems are important foraging habitats for a number of species who utilize these areas as nursery grounds during the juvenile stages. According to ICES (the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea), around 71 % of commercial species utilize these coastal areas at some period in their life. Recreational fishers and commercial coastal fishermen claim severe declines in several fish populations and these declines are reflected in declining catches and declining fishing effort. However there is limited information on the importance of these habitats for the species or whether these habitats are limiting population growth and hence fish stock recruitment. The effects of human activity are compounded in coastal systems and research on the effects of these diverse activities is needed. Habitat quantity may be determined by abiotic or biotic characteristics. Habitat quality comprises several elements including growth potential, predation pressure, migration and the potential for transport of larvae and small juveniles to suitable nursery grounds. In particular the PhD should focus on the former three elements of habitat quality. The area of study should be the inner Danish waters, where several decades’ time series data are available. It is also possible to conduct further field work within the project to further investigate specific topics.

Click here for more details.

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