[MARMAM] Sea Watch Foundation Internship Opportunity

katrin.lohrengel at seawatchfoundation.org.uk katrin.lohrengel at seawatchfoundation.org.uk
Fri Nov 20 10:03:19 PST 2020

Interns are invited to assist the Sea Watch Foundation (SWF) with the 
running of the “Cardigan Bay Monitoring Project”. The project is based 
in picturesque New Quay, West Wales, and supports 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 
vessel-based and land-based surveys.

SWF has been monitoring these populations on behalf of the Welsh 
government (through funding provided by Natural Resources Wales) for two 
decades. Cardigan Bay contains Britain’s largest coastal population of 
bottlenose dolphins, for which two Special Areas of Conservation have 
been established under the EU Habitats Directive. Internships with Sea 
Watch have frequently led to established posts in national and 
international research and conservation bodies, as well as providing a 
stepping stone for students to undertake doctoral studies in marine 
mammal science.

Interns 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 matching
Data entry
Raising public awareness
Education initiatives and events
Assisting with and participation in training courses and other needs of 
the charity.

In addition to these tasks, we have some specialist equipment, two 
hydrophones, a polecam, and an aerial drone, to opportunistically 
collect acoustic, video and aerial data during boat-based surveys. Sea 
Watch have also been contributing to a project to collect dolphin blow 
samples for population genetics and microbiome analyses. Interns 
interested in these subjects may also have the opportunity to assist in 
data collection for these projects.
Interns are required from early April until the end of October 2021. The 
research season is split into four separate periods, each lasting 7 
weeks. The research periods for the 2020 season are:
Period 1: April 12 - May 30
Period 2: May 31- July 18
Period 3: July 19 
- September 5
Period 4: September 6 - October 24
Interns are expected to arrive on the first day of their chosen period 
and depart on the first day of the next period. We are not able to 
change the start and end dates unfortunately.
Preference will be given to those applying for more than one period.

Interns will be based in New Quay, Ceredigion. Accommodation is provided 
by a private landlord through rental of a house that interns share at a 
rate of around £74 per person per week. Rooms are shared between two or 
three people, with a total of nine people in the house at any given 

Important skills/qualifications
an ability to work independently in a meticulous and reliable manner
strong commitment to volunteering work
willingness to work long hours outdoors in often changeable Welsh 
good IT skills (Office package)
an ability to get on well with others in a small team and in shared 

a strong interest and knowledge of British cetaceans
a background in marine biology/environmental science or similar
prior experience in boat-based survey work
good verbal and written communication skills and in public speaking
experience in interacting with the public

All interns will be trained in cetacean observation and identification, 
in boat survey protocols, and photo-identification of bottlenose 

Please note that at this time we cannot guarantee that internships will 
go ahead due to the restrictions that the ongoing pandemic imposes. We 
are hopeful that with the development of a vaccine we will be able to 
resume the field season as normal but if new restrictions are imposed in 
the new year, internships may need to be postponed or suspended, 
although there are various home based volunteering roles that can be 
undertaken should this occur.

International applications are welcome but it is the applicant’s 
responsibility to ensure visa requirements are met and we ask applicants 
to highlight their chosen visa option in their application. Please note 
that Sea Watch Foundation is unable to sponsor visa applications for 
Research Interns. 
If you are interested in this position, please contact Katrin 
on katrin.lohrengel at seawatchfoundation.org.uk with a completed Research 
intern application form (available on the Sea Watch website) and CV 
by 31st January 2021. Decisions will be made by 21st February 2021

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