Tropical Bird Monitoring Intern
Founded in 2002, Cloudbridge Nature Reserve is a private, non-profit cloudforest reserve in the Talamanca mountains of Costa Rica. Beginning with the purchase of degraded farmland, Cloudbridge has been actively reforesting the area in order to connect the forests of the Cerro Chirripó National Park with adjacent nature reserves and forested areas. Beyond reforestation work, Cloudbridge is also committed to environmental education and conducting research on the unique and diverse cloudforest ecosystem.
Cloudbridge Nature Reserve is looking for research interns to conduct bird point count and walking surveys for our ongoing bird monitoring study. Preferred start date is in mid to late August, lasting a minimum of 11 weeks, although later start dates later in the year are also available. This is an unpaid internship position. Training and guidance will be provided.
Interns stay in one of our dormitories and share kitchen and living spaces with our other interns and volunteers. Dorms rooms cost $15 USD/night. Some private rooms with queen beds may be available (subject to current occupancy) for an additional fee. Food costs and cooking are the responsibility of the intern. A basic diet typically costs around $4-6 USD per day.
Duties and Responsibilities
- Learn how to accurately ID, by sight, the 300 species of birds found in the reserve and pass a bird identification test within the first 2-3 weeks of arrival,
- Conduct point count and walking surveys in accordance with Cloudbridge’s Bird Survey Protocol under the direction of the Reserve Manager and Scientific Coordinator,
- Enter survey data into the bird survey database,
- Summarize collected data into a data report and give a presentation on the results,
- Greet visitors at the Welcome Centre (rota shared between all volunteers and interns),
- Perform required cleaning duties in shared living areas, and,
- Participate in reserve activities and community events.
- Schooling in ornithology, biology, wildlife or related studies, or relevant work experience; preference for avian related experience.
- Keen interest in birds and birding; preference given to those with previous field identification experience.
- Must be physically fit and able to hike 5-8 hours a day, 5 days a week in steep, high-altitude terrain.
- Experience with Microsoft Excel.
- First aid training an asset.
- Good English communication skills; ability to communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing. Ability to communicate in Spanish an asset.
- Must be able to commit to 11 weeks.
- Minimum 18 years of age.
- Able to pay for your accommodation for the duration of your stay ($15 US/night).
- Able to pay the $200 USD good faith fee upon acceptance. This fee is credited towards the last two weeks of your stay.
- Demonstrated ability to work independently
- Excellent interpersonal skills; ability to develop and maintain good relationships with others in a communal living environment
- Excellent attention to detail and adherence to survey protocols.
- Strong time management skills
- Ability to persevere and maintain high-quality work in difficult environmental and physically demanding conditions.
- Demonstrate good judgement and common sense in a wilderness environment.
- Position is located in the montane cloudforest of the Talamanca mountains of Costa Rica, adjacent to Cerro Chirripó National Park.
- Survey trails are steep and at times difficult and narrow, with river fording required.
- Altitudes range between 1550 m (5085 ft) and 2200 m (7220 ft).
- Work hours typically between 4:30 am and 12:30 pm, 5 days a week; some variation depending on survey route and survey type.
- Required to work outdoors under varying weather conditions.
- Must be able/willing to hike 5-8 hours per day, 5 days a week in steep and difficult terrain.
- Must be able to work outdoors under varying weather conditions.
To learn more about Cloudbridge, please visit our website at www.cloudbridge.org and check out the Volunteer/Research section (http://cloudbridge.org/volunteering/) for more detailed information on the research intern program.
To apply, please submit your CV and two references, along with a brief cover letter to Jennifer Powell at firstname.lastname@example.org. In the cover letter, indicate you are applying for the Tropical Bird Monitoring Intern position, and state your preferred start date and how long you would be available.