[MARMAM] River dolphin internships in Brazil

Tony Martin boto at live.co.uk
Thu Nov 27 04:03:25 PST 2008

Once again, Projeto Boto is recruiting for 9-month internships in the Mamirauá Reserve, Brazil. We require fit, enthusiastic, hard-working fieldworkers who will carry forward our long-term study of botos (Amazon river dolphins). Due to close involvement with local communities, interns are required to have at least moderate Portuguese language skills, or to speak fluent Spanish, in addition to English. There are no exceptions.
Projeto boto was established in 1994. To date it has hosted more than 50 interns of many different nationalities. The Project's objective is to conserve the boto, and the sympatric tucuxi, through research leading to greater understanding of the biology and ecology of these dolphins. In recent years we have also spent considerable time investigating the impacts of fisheries on these species, and especially the relatively new harpoon hunt, in which thousands of botos are killed each year for fish bait.
Due to unexpected circumstances, we are seeking 2 people to commence work as soon as possible, ideally in December 2008. But we would also like to hear from people available in 2009.
Our work is centred on a floating lab/accommodation base, moored in the flooded forest. The research team comprises 3-5 people, who maintain daily observational boat-based research effort year-round. The basis of the work is the piecing together of the lives of over 450 individually recognisable dolphins, to provide publishable information on such diverse topics as growth, reproduction, habitat use, social system, seasonal movements, survival rates, causes of mortality etc.
Interns are provided with free accommodation and basic food, and receive a small monthly stipend. Transportation to the fieldsite (near the town of Tefé, Amazonas) from Manaus is provided, but interns must arrange and pay for their own transportation to Manaus. All necessary training is provided on site.
Further information on all aspects of the work is available at www.projetoboto.com
Successful applicants will:
be aged 21-35
speak at least moderate Portuguese or fluent Spanish, in addition to English
be available for 9-12 months
have completed a university degree, preferably in zoology or biology
preferably have some fieldwork experience
Applicants should please provide:
Full CV, complete with age, nationality, linguistic skills, educational and fieldwork experience
A letter explaining why you are prepared to dedicate 9 months of your life to this study.
The names and email addresses of 3 referees who are familiar with you and your work.
The date on which you would be available to start work in the Amazon.
Send this information by email to both of the Project co-ordinators, Prof. Tony Martin (boto at live.co.uk) and Dr Vera da Silva (tucuxi at inpa.gov.br).
Closing date is 04 December 2008, but early application may be an advantage. Applications fulfilling the above criteria will be acknowledged within 3 days, but there will be no further communication unless the applicant is short-listed. Short-listed applicants will be notified by 09 December latest.
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