Gemma Veneruso gem_v34 at hotmail.com
Sun Jan 17 16:47:00 PST 2010


Sea Watch Foundation – Research Volunteering opportunity in Cardigan Bay for 2010
Volunteers are invited to assist the Sea Watch Foundation (www.seawatchfoundation.org.uk) with the running of the “Cardigan Bay Monitoring Project”. The project is based in New Quay, West Wales, and takes care of the conservation management of the bottlenose dolphin, harbour porpoise and grey seal populations of Cardigan Bay, monitoring their abundance, distribution, reproductive success and population structure using a combination of line-transect, photo-identification, land-based and acoustic surveys.
The volunteers will help the Cardigan Bay Monitoring Officer and the Sightings Officer by taking part in the following tasks:

·         Land-based surveys
·         Boat-based surveys 
·         Photo-identification studies
·         Database entry
·         Awareness raising
·         Education initiatives
·         Acoustic monitoring
·         Assist with and participate in training courses and public talks.
Volunteers are required from April until October 2010, for 4 separate periods of 6 weeks each. Preference will be given to those who can stay for more than one period, including the whole 6-months field season. Volunteers will be based in New Quay, West Wales. Accommodation is provided at a rate of around £55/week. Volunteers are responsible for their own travel, accommodation and living expenses, but it is generally quite easy to obtain part-time paid work in the area if required.
Volunteering periods for summer 2010:
Period 1 26/04 – 6/06, Period 2 7/06 – 18/07, Period 3 19/07 – 29/08, Period 4 30/08 – 10/10 
Important skills/qualifications
·         an ability to work in a meticulous and reliable manner
·         strong commitment to volunteering work
·         willingness to work long hours outdoors in often very changeable Welsh weather
·         good IT skills (Office package)
·         an ability to get on well with others in a small team and shared accommodation
·         a background in marine biology/environmental science or similar 
·         a strong interest and knowledge of British cetaceans 
·         prior experience in boat-based survey work 
·         good verbal and written communication skills and in public speaking 
·         experience in interacting with the public 
All volunteers will be trained in cetacean observation and identification, in line-transect survey protocols and photo-identification of bottlenose dolphins and grey seals.

To apply:
Please send your cv, covering letter and contact details of two references, reporting any relevant experience you have and specifying the period(s) you would prefer to volunteer for to Daphna Feingold (daphna.feingold at seawatchfoundation.org.uk)
Deadlines: 31st of January 2010. 
Please specify NEW QUAY VOLUNTEER APPLICATION into your subject title.
Applicants will be notified of the outcomes by the 22nd of February 2010.
The Sea Watch Foundation
The Sea Watch Foundation is a registered marine environmental research charity that aims to achieve better conservation of whales and dolphins in the seas around Britain and Ireland, by involving the public in scientific monitoring of populations and the threats they face. At Sea Watch Wales, we are dedicated to raising awareness, knowledge and conservation of the marine wildlife of West Wales. Our work is funded by the Countryside Council for Wales, Defra, Joint Nature Conservation Committee and the Heritage Lottery Fund, and we work closely with the local management authority, Ceredigion County Council.
The purpose of our research here is to monitor the marine mammal populations inhabiting Cardigan Bay, so as to gain information to aid the conservation and long-term well being of these animals and the local marine environment. This is achieved by conducting various projects including:

Estimating the abundance and distribution of bottlenose dolphins, harbour porpoises and grey seals within Cardigan Bay using distance sampling and opportunistic boat surveys
Maintaining and updating a catalogue of photographically identified bottlenose dolphins in Wales in order to study their abundance, social structure, movements and life histories.
Acoustic monitoring of bottlenose dolphins and harbour porpoises in the Cardigan Bay SAC using automated click detectors (T-PODs) and hydrophones.
Setting up a library of underwater sounds in Welsh waters in order to develop bio-acoustic research in the area.
We further aim to raise awareness and understanding of the importance of the local marine wildlife and the habitats supporting them, to encourage respect and conservation of the area and its wildlife for future generations. We also run training courses for the public in cetacean identification and survey methods.

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