Internship on butterfly behaviour and speciation in the tropics

We are seeking a research intern to work at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama from the end of June 2018 for a period of at least one year. The internship will focus on behaviour and diversification in Heliconius butterflies.

The intern will work as part of a team involving collaboration between Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich ( ) and STRI ( The intern will join a vibrant and highly international community of scientists studying the origins and maintenance of tropical diversity (see also:

The project is based in Gamboa, Panama and the intern will be assisting a project investigating the genetic basis of behavioural isolation between Heliconius species. The project involves breeding butterflies, managing crossing experiments and conducting behavioural assays. The internship is a learning experience and there will be opportunities to develop independent projects. Applicants must be able to work both as part of a team and independently, and be committed to working full time in Panama for the duration of the project. A knowledge of Spanish and the ability to drive would be useful but are not essential.

A stipend of US$1000/month will be provided to cover accommodation and living costs in Panama; we will also cover the cost of an airfair to Panama where necessary.

To apply, please send an up-to-date CV (including the names and contact details of two referees), and a cover letter explaining why you would be a good fit for this position. Please combine the CV and cover letter in one single pdf file with the file name in the format of YOURLASTNAME_STRI intern.pdf. Please send applications to Chi-Yun Kuo (; informal questions can be directed to Chi-Kuo Kuo or Richard Merrill ( Please use the subject header: “PANAMA INTERN” before 26thMay 2018. Online interviews will be held the following week.


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