[MARMAM] Marine research volunteers required for bottlenose dolphin monitoring project in Cardigan Bay

Gemma Veneruso gem_v34 at hotmail.com
Mon Jan 10 10:21:42 PST 2011

Sea Watch Foundation – Research Volunteering
opportunity in Cardigan Bay for 2011


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.


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


Database entry

Awareness raising



Assist with and
participate in training courses and public talks.


are required from April until October 2011, 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 2011:

Period 1
25/04 – 5/06, Period 2 6/06 –
17/07, Period 3 18/07 – 28/08,
Period 4 29/08 – 9/10 


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 


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:


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 2011. 


your subject title.


will be notified of the outcomes by the 22nd of February 2011.






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.



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:


     the abundance and distribution of
     bottlenose dolphins, harbour porpoises and grey seals within Cardigan Bay using distance sampling and
     opportunistic boat surveysMaintaining 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.


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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