Madagascar - Volunteer Lemur monitoring & Reforestation project

Kianjavato, Madagascar
Unpaid volunteership
Jul 08, 2019
Sep 08, 2019
Job Level
Entry level
Employment Type
Salary Type


Volunteer research assistants:  Conservation of Critically Endangered Lemurs in Kianjavato, Madagascar

Affiliated with the Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium's Conservation Genetics Department

About us: The Madagascar Biodiversity Partnership is a Malagasy NGO founded and piloted by Dr. Edward Louis Jr., Director of the Conservation Genetics Department at OHDZA in Omaha, Nebraska. Together they work to protect and restore Madagascar's remaining forests and diverse wildlife.

Project Overview:  During a 12-week tenure, volunteer cohorts will spend half their time monitoring lemurs and half their time participating in the community-based reforestation effort. 

Lemur Monitoring (5 weeks): Volunteers will follow social groups of either the greater bamboo lemur (Prolemur simus) or the black-and-white ruffed lemur (Varecia variegata) within the mountainous terrain of the Kianjavato-Vatovavy landscape. The longterm goal of this project is to offer protection for these two Critically Endangered species while gathering information on habitat usage, population dynamics, and territorial range.

Reforestation Project (5 weeks): This grassroots reforestation effort reconnects and expands natural habitats over the mountainous terrain around Kianjavato while sustainably benefiting the 14,000 area residents. Through this project we have planted over 2.6 million trees in Madagascar. The overall goal of this project is to restore habitats for wildlife and alternative resources for the local community.   

Qualifications/Experience:  We want volunteers who are going to be 100% dedicated to the projects and go above and beyond to contribute to the NGO. We prefer volunteers with at least a BA or BS in the biological or environmental sciences, and tropical restoration or forest management experience is a plus.  Some independent research experience will be an advantage, as will work or travel experience in tropical countries.  A willingness to work in isolated conditions, the ability to solve problems independently, and dedication to a positive and respectful working environment is vital.

2020 Volunteer Cohort Schedule

  • January Cohort (January 14 – 16 arrival in Madagascar; April 7 – 9 departure from Madagascar)
  • March Cohort (March 17-19 arrival in Madagascar; June 9 - 11 departure from Madagascar)
  • May Cohort (May 19 – 21 arrival in Madagascar; August 11 – 13 departure from Madagascar)
  • July Cohort (July 21 – July 23 arrival in Madagascar; October 13 – 15 departure from Madagascar)
  • September Cohort (Sept 22-24 arrival in Madagascar; December 15 – 17 departure from Madagascar)

2020 costs for participating in the MBP Volunteer program:

  • $272 USD non-refundable deposit (to secure your placement with the program)
  • $978 USD accommodation fees (includes airport assistance, travel costs to/from field station, tent site rental, and food)
  • 55USD/50Euro 90 day tourist Visa

How to Apply: Applicants should send a letter of interest, curriculum vitae, and contact information for two professional references to Dr. Ed Louis (genetics (at) omahazoo (dot) com).