Nature Seychelles manages Cousin Island, an important breeding habitat for the Critically Endangered hawksbill turtle. A monitoring programme has been running on the island since 1970. Over the last 40 years there has been an eight fold increase in the number of nesting turtles.
While the turtle population has been slowly increasing in the Seychelles since the ban on its exploitation, the species is still at risk from different factors such as poaching, anthropogenic activities (by-catch in fisheries) or climate change. We still need to closely monitor the hawksbill population to detect early trend be it positive and negative.
Every September we take teams of volunteers to help us with the turtle monitoring.Volunteers form part of a small team of 3 or 4 undertaking regular patrols (1-2 hours) on the island for hawksbill turtles. This may involve early morning and late evening patrols. You may also have opportunity to be involved in the analysis and interpretation of the data collected. All necessary training will be provided, but preference will be given to volunteers with previous turtle monitoring experience.
Patrols will be carried out in pairs and on a rota. Free time on the island can be used to relax. There may also be the opportunity to undertake a small personal research projects. Weekends may be available for travel off the island, depending on the patrol rota.
If you would like to join one of our turtle team please visit this page on the Cousin Island Website