'Tell me and I will forget, show me and I may not remember, involve me and I'll understand.'
to your destination
Volunteer stays and Internships offer a unique opportunity for one to gain hands on experience that focuses on marine mammals and ethical, responsible and educational tourism.
For some it's a sabbatical journey tuning into mother nature and for others it is a platform to deepen their relationship with wild dolphins and to extend their knowledge base in a myriad of different ways.
One can expect to have regular in-water encounters with the local dolphins while assisting Angie both at sea and behind the desk. The project operates year-round with programs lasting four weeks. Additional weeks can be arranged upon request and shorter stays on group bookings.
Our volunteer stays cater for individuals as well as small groups and families, with the volunteer house accommodating a maximum of 6 sharing. Return transfers from Maputo International Airport are including in our programms, making for a hassle free journey.
Gather data with Angie while snorkelling with wild dolphins
Boat & in-water data capturing
Land based dolphin & whale observations
Data entry & image cropping/cataloguing
Dolphins of Ponta fin id & adoption project
Preparation of info boards
Educational orientation & preparation
Marine animal stranding assistance
Bone/skeleton preparation, cataloguing & reconstruction
Tourist / lodge surveys
Assist on dolphin snorkel tours & whale watching trips.
Learn about micro-plastic surveys, water sampling & beach clean-ups!
Social media and blog posts
A DAY IN THE LIFE
By Samara Mendes February 2022
Early morning starts! On an exciting launch day, we are expected to be up and ready for the days dolphin encounters before the sun has risen – then off we go to the center were we welcome guests and allocate kit for their dolphin adventure.
Once briefed and kitted out, we make our way to the boat where the real work begins; getting the boat on the water (it’s harder than it looks!).
Once everyone is seated comfortably, we hand out life jackets and make our way out to sea – as a volunteer we are tasked with handing these out, ensuring all the guests are comfortable and always willing to help guests when needed.
Once in the water we are tasked with capturing not only our Dolfriend footage but the guests too (they love photos!).
Once we are back on land, we make our way to the cottage where we munch down on some tasty breakfast, and begin sorting through the morning’s camera footage and create a small edited video of the days sighting.
During the day volunteers are tasked with logging data into various different google docs – ranging from client data all the way to turtle data (data handling is definitely time consuming!)
Once a week we conduct a water quality test for ph levels, turbidity and oxygen levels and a micro plastic survey – were we meander down to the beach with a bucket to collect sand in order to conduct a micro plastic analysis. Volunteers are expected to read through the manual and conduct the tests as thoroughly as possible.
WHAT I LEARNED
I came into this volunteering project only knowing the basics about dolphins (what you see on TV) – having this hands-on experience has allowed me to witness behaviours I wasn’t aware of. This opportunity not only allowed me to meet and get to know the resident dolphins and their personality traits but also witness first-hand the immense efforts organizations like DolphinCare put in to try and conserve, save and raise awareness for these majestic creatures.
This knowledge will allow me to be able to identify facilities that partake in misconduct as well allowing me to become more aware of what I can do as an individual to contribute to these conservation efforts.
DOLPHINS I FELL IN LOVE WITH
On my third launch day I had the privilege of having half a circle swim with Ginger! It felt incredible to know that she felt comfortable enough to have a small conscious interaction with me before moving on. She had me smiling like a clown underwater – for its not every day you get experience such trust amongst wild animals.
Gandalf was a very friendly dolphin that decided to bless me with a full circle swim on my fourth launch. This curious male is easily identifiable by a small growth on his mouth – he came in really close and swam around me before moving on with the rest of his pod. When these conscious interactions happen, they somewhat take your breath away.