Living Seas Research Assistant (Voluntary) (65 views)

New Quay, West Wales
November 27, 2017

The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales is recruiting a Living Seas Research Assistant (voluntary) to join our Living Seas volunteer team at Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre throughout the 2018 field season (12th March to 5th November 2018).


The Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre is based in New Quay, west Wales, UK. Since 1996 we have been dedicated to raising awareness of the local marine environment through education and research. Using boat-based and land-based surveys, photo-ID and acoustic studies we monitor bottlenose dolphin, harbour porpoise and Atlantic grey seal populations in the Cardigan Bay Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and wider Irish Sea. We also run a busy visitor centre as well as our Discovery Room which offers marine educational and awareness raising activities for families, schools and groups. In April 2015 we became part of the Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales (WTSWW) and we deliver the trusts Living Seas programme.

What You Will Gain

Volunteering for the Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales at CBMWC is a fantastic opportunity for you to make a positive contribution to marine wildlife conservation and meet new people who share your interests as well as others working in the environment sector. You will learn about the species and habitats in Cardigan Bay, gain experience in field work, research methods, data processing, volunteer coordination and leadership skills. Past volunteers have gone on to further education, work as Marine Mammal Observers and to work for other conservation or Government organisations.

The volunteer programme at CBMWC has received national recognition after achieving the Investing in Volunteers Award (IiV), the UK’s quality standard for volunteer management, in January 2017. We provide a fantastic volunteer experience!

Overall Purpose of the Role:

Assist with the delivery of our Living Seas research objectives focused on marine megafauna in Cardigan Bay and the Irish Sea.

Volunteer responsibilities include (but are not limited to):

  • Assisting the Living Seas Science Officer with a range of research projects including assisting with research equipment maintenance and data analysis
  • Conducting land and boat based* marine megafauna surveys
  • Data entry and maintenance of CBMWC research databases
  • Assisting the ShoreFin and SeaSeal volunteers with their project
  • Assisting with volunteer coordination and training – responsible for shared volunteer accommodation
  • You may also be asked to assist with other aspects of our work including manning our visitor centre and assisting with community engagement activities

* Boat trips are run by an external company who we collaborate with. They are weather dependent and volunteers take turns to join trips to act as on-board researcher.

Important: The previous project volunteers have worked up to 6-8 hours a day 6 days a week, to ensure surveys can be conducted during periods of good weather and volunteers gain the most out of the experience.

The Living Seas Research will receive training in marine species identification, survey techniques, data entry, running a visitor centre and community engagement.

We are looking for volunteers with the following skills/qualities:

  • Fluency in English
  • Research and surveying experience
  • IT skills, including Microsoft Office
  • Positive, reliable, responsible, conscientious and mature attitude
  • Ability to work and live closely with others as part of a small team
  • Strong work ethic with an ability to work unsupervised
  • Adaptable and patient (particularly as boat work is weather dependent)
  • Experience of working in a small team

Desirable skills

  • Leadership experience
  • Experience of GIS and Word Press

Volunteering Dates:

The successful applicant must be available to start on 12th March and volunteer for the entire field season until 5th November 2018.