Internship – Research & Conservation in the Amazon Rainforest (Peru)
~Fauna Forever’s flagship research & conservation internship in the Peruvian Amazon: This position provides an opportunity to work alongside and learn from a dynamic team of researchers and conservationists, in a Neotropical environment, for an unrestricted period of time, and ultimately on a research project of your choice. The intern will carry out research with the close support of an experienced tropical biologist as well as the entire Fauna Forever (FF) research team which includes fellow interns and volunteers. The research is carried out at one or multiple locations within the famous Madre de Dios Region of Peru and may include sites in and around the 1,478,942-hectare Tambopata National Reserve (TNR) or dotted along the Las Piedras Watershed – an understudied and remote area which our preliminary studies show is remarkably high in biological diversity. Based out of the jungle city of Puerto Maldonado, FF Interns live and work between town and the rainforest depending on data collection vs. data analysis requirements. Join us today, create your own research/conservation project and help us understand and conserve this unique Amazon wilderness area.
The FF research teams usually undertake a large array of research and monitoring tasks in the rainforest each day and may cover a vast expanse of jungle. Fauna Forever currently conducts research across more than 25 research sites in the Madre de Dios Region.
More information about the Research & Conservation Internship
Fauna Forever currently manages a long-term wildlife monitoring project called Fauna Forever Tambopata (FFT), specialising in mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, insects, and trees; an animal welfare project called Animal Welfare Forever, focussing on both domestic pets and some captive wild species (kept by other organizations); an environmental education and awareness initiative centred on schools in Puerto Maldonado and surrounding villages; an ecosystem services project, involving the economic valuation of intact forest; a mini-conservation corridor project called Forest Corridors Forever; a series of workshops focussing on (a) bird banding/ringing and handling techniques (Bird Ringing Forever, in collaboration with CORBIDI), (b) wildlife photography (Untamed Photography), and (c) statistical techniques. A lot of what we do helps various groups improve their knowledge acquisition methods and encourages them to make better land-use planning decisions to reduce impacts on the environment and to maximise human wellbeing.
To help our core team of Peruvian and international staff undertake and manage these initiatives, and to help us answer some deeper ecological and socio-economic questions revealed by our work, we have developed over many years what are now called the Fauna Forever Intern Program (FF Intern Program) and the Fauna Forever–Tambopata National Reserve Volunteer Program (FF-TNR Volunteer Program).
The FF Intern Program requires interested candidates to officially apply for one of our limited number of intern positions, either directly through us or one of our partner agencies in Peru, UK, South Africa, and USA. This can be done using our Intern Application Form.
We can accommodate up to 5 interns per month, and intern periods can stretch from 1-12 months (mean = 3 months). Some intern applicants express an interest in undertaking their own small research project, either as a dissertation requirement, to obtain extra credits from their university, or simply to get further experience of planning and executing such projects in a tropical environment. We are very happy to accommodate this type of project, and can provide the necessary supervision and guidance both in the planning and execution stages. Indeed, we also supply a list of potential mini-project titles to help successful candidates choose an appropriate study subject (download mini project ideas by clicking the button alongside). We can also review other research questions, although acceptance of these would be dependent on identifying an appropriate field supervisor (supplied by Fauna Forever). All interns receive a general orientation and induction course at the start of their visit, after which they are assigned to one or other of our project staff, though swapping in and out of different projects is also possible.
Typically, a Fauna Forever intern will spend about 4-5 hours a day focussed on activities either in the Fauna Forever house/office, around Puerto Maldonado or off in the field. During the rest of their time, interns are free to explore the area, improve their Spanish language skills, coordinate fun activities with other interns and staff, and mingle with visiting volunteers and researchers. At least a basic knowledge of Spanish is encouraged, though it is not a pre-requisite as most interns pick up at least some Spanish during their time here.
Map of Fauna Forever Sites
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View Asociación Fauna Forever Map in a larger map
~Dates & Prices
Due to a shortage of central funds to cover all intern-related costs, we ask all interns to contribute a fee to help cover their in-country costs. The longer the stay, the lower are the daily fixed costs, and thus the lower the daily rate. The basic contribution fees for 2012-2013 are summarised below:
- 1 month (minimum stay)
- 2 months
- 3 months
- 4 months
- 5+ months
US$ per day
- US$ 70
- US$ 55
- US$ 50
- US$ 45
- US$ 40 (**Minimum price per day)
Please Note: For other durations (e.g. 45 days) we apply a pro-rata system to determine the final fee. **This pro-rata system does NOT apply for periods longer than 150 days (5 months). For special requirements, requiring services other than our regular capabilities, an additional fee may be required to cover this.
* What the fee includes
- ALL accomodation in Puerto Maldonado and in the field
- Three substantial and healthy meals every day
- Clean drinking water at all times
- Airport (Puerto Maldonado) transfers on arrival and departure
- Close supervision from an experienced tropical biologist
- Support and training: Health & Safety; species identification; data collection in a Neotropical environment, data analysis; impacts and challenges affecting the rainforest in Tambopata; machete use; and much more.
What the fee does not include
- Travel insurance (this is essential)
- Spending money for snacks, sodas, alcohol, souvenirs and extra excursions