Want to learn more about creating and restoring habitat for wildlife? Want to build a wetland and wait and see the amphibians and other aquatic species that move in? Would you like to spend time living and learning about the tropical jungle and its inhabitants? Happy to get down and dirty? Then this is the internship for you!
The T.R.E.E.S Hosting Center sits on 200 acres of lowland broadleaf forest and has a large permanent creek running through the property fed by numerous mountain streams. There are several species of stream-breeding amphibians that live and breed on site, including some rare and endemic species. However permanent and ephermeral wetland habitat is lacking and is required by a number of breeding amphibians, including many species of neotropical treefrogs. Some species have been observed breeding at the center in man-made structures such as water cisterns and septic fields. The goal of this internship is to create a small wetland complex consisting of a matrix of ephemeral and permanent waterbodies that will attract and maintain populations of breeding amphibians as well as fish, reptiles (especially turtles), birds, and other wildlife. T.R.E.E.S will provide manpower and tools to implement this project and Ecorana will advise from a scientific perspective with respect to amphibian breeding habitat requirements, but ultimately it will be the student’s responsibility to design the project and see its creation through. It is hoped that this wetland complex can also be used as a temporary holding facility for injured hicatees (Central American River Turtle) in joint partnership with the National Hicatee Conservation Monitoring Network and the Belize Wildlife Rescue Network.
We are looking for interns who are independent yet willing to work in a team environment. This internship is ideal for a student pursuing a career path in ecological restoration that wants to gain hands-on experience in their field of study while living immersed in a tropical environment.
- In partnership with Ecorana biologists, conduct a literature review using peer-reviewed resources to identify the breeding habitat requirements of target neotropical amphibians to ensure location and dimensions of wetland habitat created will be adequate. Include in literature review information on hicatee habitat requirements so that wetland can have dual purpose.
- Design a wetland creation project including specific site identification as well as identifying the appropriate size, materials and tools required to create the habitat and ensure that all materials are available.
- Execute the project, which will require a lot of digging and other manual labour (most of the work will be done by manpower and not by machinery)
- Understand and follow all safety regulations and priorities while working in the field and office.
- Create a scientific-style report that includes the literature review and also a methods, results, and discussion section as well as management guidelines outlining how to maintain the created habitat
- Scientific research and writing skills (be able to navigate through peer-reviewed resources and write a basic literature review).
- Being enrolled or having completed a program of study in ecological restoration techniques an asset.
- Be physically fit and have ability to spend long hours in the field (under difficult conditions)
- Enjoy working with a diverse community of people.
- Experience using Microsoft Office Suite, Photoshop, and ArcGIS an asset.
- Flexible easy-going attitude.
Physical Requirements and Work Conditions
- Ability to tolerate high temperature and high humidity.
- Ability to work in environments where exposure to spiky plants, toxic vines, scorpions, spiders, and ticks is common. In addition, it is the jungle; venemous snakes are uncommon but present.
- Ability to live in remote conditions away from electronic ammenities.
- Possible indoor work is performed in a typical office setting.
- Ability to lift, carry, and position objects weighing up to 50 pounds.
Gain a working hands-on knowledge of ecological restoration techniques and have the opportunity to see a project through from design to completion and advise on follow-up maintenance and monitoring.
- Hone skills in scientific research and writing that will aid in future employment in a variety of professional sectors
- Opportunity to attend personal/professional development days with local experts.
- Opportunity to live in and enjoy the scenery, wildlife, and cultural resources of a beautiful country in Central America.
- Opportunities to work with other interns, guides, and locals from diverse backgrounds that share a common interest in preserving and protecting our natural lands.
- No application deadline
- Start-date: Open
- Length of position: 4 to 6 weeks
- Schedule: 30 hours per week, Monday–Friday.
Ecorana fees for internships for international students are $25 US/day. This includes lodging and use of all facilities at the T.R.E.E.S Hosting Center, training on methodologies by Ecorana biologists and local T.R.E.E.S professionals in their field of study, as well as mentorship from Ecorana tutors for the duration of the intended internship. International students must have international travel medical insurance during their stay in Belize. At the discretion of the T.R.E.E.S managers, local Belizean students (especially those not staying on site) can have fees reduced or exchanged for work. All interns (international and local) are required to pay for transportation to/from the site and their food while on site (cooking facilities provided).
Please indicate the position title in your email subject line. No phone calls please.
For more information about the internship center (T.R.E.E.S Hosting Center), visit: www.treesociety.org