[MARMAM] Stranding Investigations Program Internships

Victoria Socha vsocha at mote.org
Tue Nov 6 06:13:57 PST 2007


Mote Marine Laboratory’s Stranding Investigations Program (SIP) is 
seeking applicants for spring, summer, and fall internships.  SIP 
provides 24-hour response to sick, injured and dead marine mammals and 
sea turtles in west central Florida.  In addition, the program aims to 
increase our understanding of the biology, ecology and pathology of 
marine animals, investigate natural and human-related mortality, monitor 
long-term mortality trends, and provide data to managers for effective 
conservation of marine species.  The intern will be directly involved in 
the 24-hour response, recovery, and transport of live and dead stranded 
marine mammals (dolphins, whales, and manatees) and sea turtles from 
Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte and Lee Counties. These internships are unpaid.


Share responsibility for responding to a 24-hour stranding notification 
pager and coordinating response based on the species, number, size, and 
condition of the animal(s).  Direct involvement in marine mammal and sea 
turtle rescue and recovery is required.

Involvement in the examination, data collection, necropsy, tissue 
sampling, processing and distribution, and disposal of marine mammal and 
sea turtle carcasses.

Data entry, database management, supplies inventory and biological 
sample archive management.

Equipment maintenance, errands, and other duties as requested.


Valid Florida Class E driver’s license or equivalent

The ability to lift a minimum of 50 lbs, swim, walk long distances, work 
in hot field conditions, tolerate strong odors, and work with the public 
and media

The ability to work independently and follow instructions

The ability to operate personal watercraft and ATVs, or the willingness 
to learn

Computer knowledge (Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Access, ArcGIS), strong 
verbal and written communication skills, and high attention to detail

A background or degree in biology, zoology, or animal behavior

MUST be willing to work flexible hours, including weekends and holidays. 
This position can require long days, including late night and early 
morning hours.

Please understand that the level of stranding activity is not only 
physically demanding, but also extremely unpredictable.  As a result, 
there are no guarantees about the number of animals or species we will 
encounter.  In addition, much of the work related to SIP can be 
classified as “non-glamorous”.  In many cases, field examination, 
dissection, tissue collection, and disposal of large decaying carcasses 
is involved.  Interns should be prepared for direct involvement with 
large, putrid carcasses.

Interns may be able to participate in other marine mammal and/or sea 
turtle program activities, as needed, and as time allows.

Interns should wear casual and comfortable clothing, and be prepared for 
all types of weather. Clothing should be suitable for public 
presentation, but casual enough to withstand getting wet and dirty. 
Occasionally, a swimsuit or wetsuit is required for stranding response.

The intern will be trained by Stranding Investigations Program staff. 
Once the intern has gained adequate knowledge about the strandings 
program, biology of the animals, and the tasks involved in our stranding 
response, they will be assigned independent projects, some of which they 
will help initiate. The supervisor/s will monitor the projects and 
remain accessible to the intern for questions and advice.

This position requires a commitment of 3 months, 40 hours per week, on a 
voluntary basis – interns will not be paid, nor will housing or 
transportation be provided (however Mote can assist interns in finding 
housing).  There is flexibility on the start dates.

Mote provides the opportunity for some interns to receive a scholarship 
to help pay for living expenses during the internship. Please visit our 
website at www.mote.org for more information.

Please visit www.mote.org for internship applications and general 
information. When submitting your application, please indicate your 
interest in the Stranding Investigations Program on the form.

Any general questions regarding internships at Mote should be directed 
to Dana O’Mara at danaomara at mote.org or (941) 388-4441 ext. 462.

Any questions directly related to the Stranding Investigations Program 
Internships, please contact Vikki Socha at vsocha at mote.org or (941) 
388-4441 ext. 239.

Mote Marine Laboratory is an independent, nonprofit research 
organization dedicated to excellence in marine science and education.

Victoria L. Socha, Staff Biologist
Stranding Investigations Program
Mote Marine Laboratory
1600 Ken Thompson Parkway
Sarasota, FL 34236
(941) 388-4441 x239 (phone)
(941) 388-4317 (fax)

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