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Marine Turtle Conservation Akumal/Mexico

Internship and Volunteering Possible
The "Centro Ecológico Akumal" (CEA) has been working for the protection and research with sea turtles at Akumal's four beaches in the Riviera Maya of Mexico since 1993, During the breeding season from May to September, you can participate in turtle conservation as a volunteer or intern. Also check out our video on this project!

Project Details

There are seven species of marine turtles on this planet, which all are either threatened or critically endangered. Mexico is home to six of these species, of which two nest at the beaches of Akumal: the Loggerhead Turtle (Caretta Caretta) and the Green Turtle (Chelonia Mydas).
Since 1993, the “Centro Ecológico Akumal“ (CEA) has been in charge of the protection and research of marine turtles at four of Akumal’s beaches. Since 2006, CEA has been monitoring young turtles in the Akumal Bay every other month. Turtles are caught in the bay around twice per week in order to mark, measure, weigh and examine them. The idea of the CEA team of biologists is to monitor the impacts of tourism and general pollution on the turtles’ health. If you want to participate in this activity you have to be a strong swimmer and not easily become seasick.
During the nesting season from May to September, volunteers and interns patrol the beaches at night together with CEA staff in order to protect female turtles while they are nesting, then, subsequently the actual nests and finally the hatchlings. Our video (see the link above) niceöy portraits this "Turtle Walk" activity. As the patrolling work at night can be hard, volunteers and interns should be in good physical and mental condition in order to be able to carry out the work on several consecutive nights.
As awareness-raising for tourists and locals is a main objective of CEA, volunteers and interns also assist with the preparation and implementation of awareness-raising events and the regular "turtle talks", informing visitors. These take place at the centre, which is located at the beach of Akumal, but also at public schools and other public places.
Participants who are experienced divers can join the coral reef monitoring program.
Previous knowledge in marine biology or about turtles is not necessary. Participants should simply have a strong interest in wildlife and more generally, in conservation. They should be able to communicate either in English or Spanish. Additionally, they are expected to be of adventurous mind, respectful of other cultures and able to work as part of a team.
Info Box
Location: Akumal, Mexico
Availability: May to September
Minimum Duration: 1 month
Maximum Duration: 5 months
Language Requirements: English
Further Languages Of Advantage: Spanish
Accommodation: Dormitory of the turtles station
Supervision Possible: Yes
Qualification Of Supervisor: Marine Biologist
Minimum Quoaification Of Intern:
Further Contribution To Project: Is included in our service package fee. Also the rent for accommodation funds the project
Volunteering Possible: Yes
Required Qualification For Volunteer: None
Further Contribution To Project: The rent for accommodation funds the project
Professional Conduct, Do you have the "right" attitude?

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