The Technology Transfer Program (BC-TTP), British Columbia Honey Producers Association, is seeking for one summer intern to assist with research and technology transfer projects related to enhancing honey bee health. Honey bees play an important role in agricultural ecosystems, by pollinating crops and wild plants. Additionally, honey bees are susceptible to a number of stressors, which makes them suitable as bioindicators. The aim of the research will be focused on monitoring a damaging parasite of the honey bee, the mite Varroa destructor, and monitoring viral levels in different populations of British Columbia. The study will be used to survey the health status of honey bees, and the information will lay the foundation for future research on methods to control the parasite with minimal impact to the environment (e.g. non-synthetic acaricides) and to assess the interaction between honey bees and native pollinators in agricultural ecosystems (e.g. pathogen spillover).
The intern will be responsible of assisting in field research, including opening honey bee colonies and collecting samples. Also, the intern will assist in workshops and knowledge transfer to beekeepers and farmers, focusing on best management practices to reduce the impact of agricultural stressors on honey bees and native pollinators.
Specific duties will include:
Travelling to apiaries to record mite levels.
Travelling to apiaries to collect samples of mites and honey bees.
Data analysis (learning and implementing statistical analysis).
Taking photographic records.
Assisting in workshops focused on integrated pest management and best management practices.
Assisting in workshops focused on the importance of native pollinators in agroecosystems.
Assisting with outreach activities, including social media and presentations.
Required skills and experience
(Some) post-secondary education and interest in relevant discipline (environmental sciences or biology).
Strong interest in biology, pollinators, improvement of agroecosystems, and field work.
Interest in learning biology, technical skills, and data analysis.
Interest in developing a professional career.
Ability to work professionally and safely in the field.
Ability to work with honey bees (not allergic to bee stings).
Strong interpersonal kills, ability to keep a positive relationship with colleagues and farmers.
Willingness to work long hours and weekends (when necessary).
A valid BC driver license (full license)
Legally eligible to work in Canada
Familiarity with beekeeping practices.
Science communication skills, including virtual and in-person presentations and social media.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion
BC-TTP values the diversity of our team members. We promote an environment of equity, diversity, and inclusion in our workplace. Therefore, we encourage all qualified individuals to apply.
Health and safety
This position requires working in the field with honey bees and using chemical reagents to preserve and process samples. Thus, interns will be required to complete a WHIMS online course and complete a training field session on basic beekeeping management (delivered by BC-TTP). The intern should bring a first aid kit at all times and follow the instructions of the supervisor. BC-TTP will provide veil and coverall as part of the PPE. In addition, the candidate must follow the BC Ministry of Health safety regulations operating during a pandemic, the selected candidate must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to ensure the health and safety of co-workers and our community.
To apply please send a cover letter and resume in a single pdf or word file to firstname.lastname@example.org addressed to the ‘BC – Technology Transfer Program’ with the subject heading “Summer internship 2022”. Applications will be revised as they are submitted, and the position will be filled as soon as a suitable candidate is found. Applications submitted after May 2, 2022 11:59 PM PT will not be considered.