The Pacific Whale Foundation is located in Puerto Lopez, whales visit this part of Ecuador between June and October each year, due to the cold Humboldt Current. As a volunteer you can observe these amazing animals and contribute to the research.
This volunteer opportunity is open and adaptable for anyone and might be especially interesting for animal lovers, nature & beach lovers, families, veterinarians or (marine) biologists.
During your volunteer project you have some tasks or duties that you have to accomplish day by day, such as:
- Take the turtles out of their tanks
- Introduction to the team, orientation and methodology
- Scrub turtles clean
- Empty and refill water tanks
- Cleaning water tanks
- Night patrol
- Beach cleaning from plastic
You will have a mix of Spanish classes (4 hours of Spanish lessons per week) held at the research centre, whale watching research (on the boat), behavioral data analyzation, help out with photo identification, comparison, and draw conclusions and results. At the end of your program you will receive a certificate of your attendance as a volunteer at the Pacific Whale Foundation. There is also an excursion to Isla de la Plata included for trekking and snorkelling.
Besides the daily tasks at the whale foundation, your own initiative is always highly appreciated. If you want to contribute extra to the project, share your ideas with the volunteer coordinator of the project. In the Ecuadorian culture people might be a bit shy in telling you what to do. Therefore, it will make your volunteer period more worthwhile if you show initiative - both for your own personal growth and the project. The people at this project are always very open to new ways of helping the program: so think about what you are passionate about, use your creativity and go for it!
The more involved you get in your work, the more responsibility you will be given as a volunteer once you have built a certain level of trust with the turtles and workers. Show initiative, work independently and don’t be afraid of working hard. They need all the help you can give them.
What is included
Meet and greet with project staff
Orientation day at project with English-speaking volunteer coordinator
Assistance before and during your time at the project by volunteer coordinator
Donation fee for Turtle project
Return transfer to turtle project on first day only