Ref SLU ua 2019.2.5.1-2832
Department of Animal Nutrition and Management
The Department offers an inspiring research environment where we carry out basic and applied research on chemical nutrient composition, animal metabolism, housing and management. The goal is to create a sustainable and profitable production with good animal care that provides high quality food. The Department works with farm species as well as sport and pet animals. The research is often interdisciplinary and carried out in co-operation with other Departments, both in Sweden and abroad. Research in sustainable livestock systems in the tropics is also an important part of the activities at the Department. Within the poultry research area, our goal is to develop knowledge in the area of nutrition, housing and management of meat-type chickens and laying hens.
Project: “Feeding live insect larvae to laying hens – environmental enrichment and replacement of imported proteins in the diet”
The aim of this project is to investigate the use of live soldier fly larvae (Hermetia illucens) as a novel and biologically relevant environmental enrichment to promote foraging behaviours and reduce feather pecking in laying hens. A secondary aim, is to utilize fly larvae, grown in Sweden using local organic blue mussel by-products, as an alternative feed source for poultry. The project is funded by The Swedish Research Council FORMAS. The postdoc will be supported by a multidisciplinary research team at SLU working with poultry management, behaviour, welfare and nutrition and a group working with insect production from food waste. External collaborators to this project include Prof. Bas Rodenburg from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University (The Netherlands) and Prof. Frank Tuyttens from the Flanders Research Institute for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (ILVO, Belgium).
The postdoc will be responsible to plan, coordinate, collect data and publish the results from the project. In addition, the postdoc is expected to supervise bachelor and MSc students working on the project. The first part of the project aims at developing a system to feed live soldier fly larvae to laying hens, to ensure that the nutritional requirements for egg production are met and to develop methods to provide the live larvae in a way that acts as an environmental enrichment. The last part of the project aims to investigate the effects of feeding live larvae as environmental enrichment vs conventional feeding on foraging behaviour, resource utilization, egg production and egg characteristics, stress responses and feather pecking in laying hens. The postdoc will be supported by an international and interdisciplinary team with expertise in poultry nutrition, management and welfare, insect production and using insects as a feed source for animals.
The candidate should hold a PhD in animal science, veterinary medicine or biology in the field of animal nutrition and/or animal behaviour, or equivalent. The candidate should have obtained the PhD degree within the last 3 years. The candidate should have a demonstrated ability to coordinate research projects independently and have the ability to collaborate with a large multidisciplinary group. Previous experience of designing, conducting and analysing experiments on animals is essential. The candidate must have excellent oral and written communication skills in English. Excellent interpersonal skills are essential for this position. A strong publication record (in relation to the time since dissertation) in quality peer reviewed journals is a merit. Experience working with both, poultry nutrition and poultry behaviour will be considered as an advantage.
Requirements: Valid driver licence.
Place of work:
Form of employment:
Fixed term employment of 24 months.
There will be work outside regular office hours during intensive experimental work, when required by the experiment.
November 2019 or according to agreement.
We welcome your application no later than 2019-09-02, to apply use the button below.
Applications must be written in English and contain
1) Summary of research experience indicating the fulfilment of qualifications required for the position as well as future plans (max 6000 characters including spaces)
2) Curriculum Vitae including complete publication list clearly indicating peer reviewed and non-peer reviewed publications and
3) contact information for two reference persons.
Academic union representatives:
The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) develops the understanding and sustainable use and management of biological natural resources. The university ranks well internationally within its subject areas. SLU is a research-intensive university that also offers unique degree programmes in for example rural development and natural resource management, environmental economics, animal science and landscape architecture.
SLU has just over 3,000 employees, 5,000 students and a turnover of SEK 3 billion. The university has invested heavily in a modern, attractive environment on its campuses in Alnarp, Umeå and Uppsala.
SLU is an equal opportunity employer.
Carlos E. Hernandez
Post expires on Monday September 2nd, 2019