Wednesday, March 08, 2017

VOLUNTEER: Summer Volunteer Opportunities with Cetus’ Robson Bight Warden Program!

Cetus is a non-profit, marine conservation society, which operates in the waters around Victoria and Alert Bay, British Columbia, Canada. Since 2005 we have worked to reduce disturbances to marine mammals on the British Columbia coast and promote respect for our marine environment through on-the-water and land-based education, outreach and direct monitoring activities.

The Robson Bight Marine Warden Program operates in Johnstone Strait, in the waters around the Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve. The ecological reserve is designated for the protection of critical habitat of the Northern resident killer whales. This is a unique area where the whales often come to rub their bodies along the underwater beaches. Our marine wardens monitor vessels and marine mammal populations, and educate boaters and kayakers about the reserve and their impacts around it. The Robson Bight Marine Warden Program is comprised of a water based monitoring and educational component and a land based monitoring station called Eagle Eye, situated on a cliff opposite the ecological reserve.

Cetus is looking for enthusiastic and hard working individuals to fill the Robson Bight Marine Warden Program Summer Volunteer positions:
Volunteer positions will be based out of a rustic field camp in Boat Bay on West Cracroft Island located near Alert Bay, British Columbia, Canada. Positions will be offered between June 26th and September 8th 2017. We require a minimum 3-week commitment. Preference will be given to those who are able to stay for the full 11 weeks.
Successful applicants will have the opportunity to be involved with a variety of possible tasks ranging from community outreach and education to marine mammal response and data collection. Our programs focus on protecting British Columbia's marine mammal populations and encouraging others to do the same. Interns may also have the opportunity to spend time on our monitoring vessels in which case they will participate in data collection, data entry and on-the-water boater education.

Responsibilities include:
  • Educating boaters, kayakers, park visitors, and members of the public about the marine mammal viewing guidelines, marine species at risk, the conservation issues they face and the boundaries of the Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve
  • Collecting and entering data on marine mammals and vessel activity 
  • Public interpretation in the form of dock talks and participation in community events
  • Potentially helping to respond to injured, sick or dead marine mammals in support of the BC Marine Mammal Response Network
  • Observing and recording cetaceans in support of the BC Cetacean Sightings Network
  • Assisting with general administrative duties 
  • Camp duties, which includes cooking, cleaning, general maintenance and heavy lifting
What skills and experience will volunteers gain?:
  • Experience educating the public on important conservation issues
  • Experience with field data collection and entry
  • Interpretive skills and techniques
  • Potential for experience in marine mammal response
  • Experience with fundraising and community outreach
  • Experience working with Microsoft Access
Essential Requirements:
  • Fluent spoken English
  • Interest in marine wildlife and conservation
  • Flexibility
  • Ability to work long hours, outdoors, in all weather conditions
  • The ability to live & work comfortably in a remote coastal wilderness camp setting with staff & volunteers
  • The physical ability to carry 40lbs of gear to and from the vessel to base camps (this varies from across the street to down a rocky shoreline). In addition to this volunteers are required to hike, 3km (each way), from the base camp to the observation site on alternate days, which takes approximately 1 hour (one way)
Additional Information: These positions are unpaid and carry a cost to the interns of $125/ week to cover accommodations, extra fuel and dinners (volunteers will be responsible for their own breakfasts and lunches). Warden volunteers will need to bring their own tent and sleeping bag. Tent pads and tarps will be provided as will camp cooking equipment etc. 

How to apply: Please forward your cover letter, resume and two references via email by April 17th, 2017.  Please indicate your availability. Only successful applicants will be contacted.

Contact: Marie Fournier, Cetus Research & Conservation Society, Email: robsonbight@cetussociety.org
For more information please visit our website www.ProtectOurWhales.com

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