The Bottlenose Dolphin Research Institute (BDRI) is a marine science center for Field Research and Training in cetaceans (dolphins, whales and porpoises) ecology and behaviour.
In addition to the marine mammals research activities of the BDRI, the institute also undertakes a rigorous educational programme throughout the year. It is actively involved with volunteers, colleges and universities – providing work experience opportunities, internship positions and university project placements for under and post-graduate students throughout the year.
BDRI members seek to contribute to the understanding and conservation of dolphins, expand the public's knowledge and concern for our marine environment. Using study techniques that neither harm nor seriously disturb the animals, BDRI's researchers are engaged in the conduction of a long term study about the ecology and behaviour of a bottlenose dolphin population, as well as collecting detailed information about their environment.
Dolphin research volunteers in Spain will assist with data collection while on board the research boat, help to locate and keep track of dolphin groups and collect environmental information. Back in the lab, volunteers will assist with restocking field supplies and transcribing data sheets.
Working with a mentor, volunteers and interns will gain field and laboratory experience using various scientific methods. Whilst in the lab, participants will assist with the transcription of collected data, perform photo-identification analysis, use various software, and more.
Internships can be used for academic or vocational purposes and require a minimum stay of 30 days.
Benefits of a bottlenose dolphin research volunteering:
- Develop valuable skills beyond that of a typical internship
- Gain experience in fieldwork and lab work, obtain general knowledge about bottlenose dolphins, their conservation and the marine environment
- Learn about different research instruments and techniques
- Take responsibility for your work and become a part of a research project
- Meet, work and live with people from all over the world
- Enjoy the outdoors of beautiful Galicia, Spain
Dolphin research Volunteers and interns will stay in a shared apartment in the coastal town of O Grove. The apartment is located close to the research centre and harbour as well as to supermarkets, beaches, bank and the post office. The accommodation includes three rooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen and a living room. Depending on the number of participants you will share a room with a maximum of three other volunteers of the same gender.
The apartment has satellite television and a reliable supply of electricity with a standard European plug so recharging digital cameras, telephones and video camera batteries is not a problem. There is free WIFI in the research base and in the apartment.
During your stay you will be responsible for your own food preparation and cleaning. The apartment has a full kitchen (gas and electricity included) and a full set of cooking utensils. Foods of all kinds are available at the local supermarkets within walking distance at your own expense. Several supermarkets and local restaurants and bars are available in O Grove offering seafood, fast food, roast dinners and vegetarian foods. You can also find Galician specialties and other fresh groceries in many small delicacy shops.
The costs to join this dolphin research project vary depending on the time of year you want to join, and how long you would like to stay.
Winter Season (February to April) - USD 600 for 1 week (USD 120 application payment, balance of 480 USD)
Spring Season (May to June) - USD 680 for 1 week (USD 130 application payment, balance of 550 USD)
Summer Season (July to September) - USD 760 for 1 week (USD 150 application payment, balance of USD 610)
Autumn Season (October to November) - USD 600 for 1 week (USD 120 application payment, balance of 480 USD)
Located in the coastal town of O Grove in Galica, Spain, volunteers and interns will have the opportunity to contribute to bottlenose dolphin, whale & porpoise conservation whilst gaining hands on field and laboratory experience.