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CEES Student Research Opportunity: White-tailed Deer Densities at Pilot Mountain

April 7, 2017

Work to evaluate survey methods in estimating white-tailed deer densities and their effects on vegetative communities at Pilot Mountain State Park, NC. 

Project Description:
Pilot Mountain State Park is located in Surry and Yadkin Counties, North Carolina. Located off highway US 52, it covers 3,735 acres (15.12 km2) and includes the distinctive 2,241 foot (683 m) peak of Pilot Mountain.  In 2015, Wake Forest University’s Center for Energy, Environment and Sustainability began efforts to evaluate the impact of white-tailed deer herbivory and obtain reliable population estimates for the white-tailed deer population.

Internships are available for interested students to assist throughout the year with various white-tailed deer population survey techniques (infrared-triggered cameras, and aerial infrared imaging) and vegetation sampling. There may be additional opportunity for expanded projects as things develop.

No field experience is needed. Necessary training and supervision will be provided for project volunteers and/or research hours.  Applicants should be capable of hiking for long distances over uneven and rough terrain and capable of carrying up to 50 lbs of equipment.

Student Research/Internship Benefits:
Students will gain valuable field experience with various aspects of wildlife and forest management. In addition, they have the potential to learn valuable skills related to project design and data management and manipulation.

Volunteer positions are available immediately with opportunities for paid internship or credits for student research hours based on individual effort and interest.

Students can either carpool or provide their own transportation to the project area with valid car insurance and driver’s license.

Email a short letter of interest, resume, and availability to Jared Beaver, beaverj@wfu.edu.