Potential Areas of Environmental/Conservational Specialization or Photographic interest

Recently, I have started to build a list of considerations for environmental and conservation fields in which I could develop experience and/or training as means of gaining access to ecological significance sites, enhance my networking options or create further opportunities to develop photographic projects.

For my final post, I want to reflect upon the areas or subjects that I feel passionate about or that I feel would provide me with more flexible options for more developed work.

When beginning to first build my aspirations as a wildlife photographer, there were various subjects that I felt strongly about protecting. I feel a strong connection with mammalian animals, especially primates and other more advanced animals, finding their cognitive abilities and complex behaviours to be incredibly fascinating. Although, I had always acknowledged this as likely to be of interest to many other aspiring wildlife photographers and film makers.

Throughout the duration of my third year, I’d started to consider this in more practical sense or at least with greater acknowledgement for some of the most ecologically significant areas.

I considered the appeal of ornithology, although not matching the mental complexity of mammals, birds are still interesting subjects in a contextual and aesthetic sense and have much higher populations than their mammalian equivalents in the UK. One downside to this, is working with a large majority of bird subjects leads to a higher competitive market of other bird enthusiasts.

Another potential issue with any of these considerations is when working with any highly protected species, there will be a long process of approval, permits and considerable costs associated with this, which is difficult for a beginner with financial support, therefore it would likely be better to avoid more specialised areas such as birds of prey.

Leading towards my final major project, I started to consider aspects relating to water based wildlife and hydrology. Throughout this project I start reflect more upon my intended direction and think about potential specialisations or subjects within this. In my consideration of coastal and marine areas, I noted how significant the consequences of man made influences create an aesthetic and ecological ripple effect upon sensitive marine eco-systems.

Upon reflection of this and my recent research, I became interesting in developing relevant skill sets and hands on experience in these areas. I listed a variety of volunteer positions relevant to this, some local, other requiring long distance commuting or relocation.

Research Volunteer

Organisation: Liverpool Bay Marine Life Trust
Salary: Voluntary
Location: Merseyside
Hours: Either
Position type: Volunteer
Contract: Temporary
Closing date: Mon 30 June 14
Contact name: Mathew Clough
Contact telephone: 07504516705
Contact email: mathewclough@liverpoolbaymlt.org

Liverpool Bay Marine Life Trust is seeking local volunteers to help in the running of several exciting new marine wildlife projects in Merseyside. The charity is based in Birkenhead, Merseyside, and aims to monitor cetaceans, sharks and seals in Liverpool Bay by studying abundance and distribution through both land and boat based surveys. Volunteers will be required to take part in a number of tasks including: – Land-based cetacean watches – Land-based seal surveys and photo-identification – shark tagging surveys – data entry – social media and blogging – public awareness – school visits and talks – attending public events representing Liverpool Bay Marine Life Trust Essential skills and qualifications: – strong interest in marine wildlife – ability to work reliably and independently – good knowledge of Microsoft Office Desirable skills and qualifications: – background in zoology/ecology/biology – previous experience in photo-identification – basic knowledge of DSLR cameras – experience in public speaking Volunteers are expected to commit at least 8 hours per month. The work is on-going and volunteer work is available throughout the year, however, we are particularly in need of volunteers to support us during the months of May to August. Unfortunately we cannot provide accommodation for volunteers at this time.

Community & Conservation Volunteer

Organisation: Scottish Wildlife Trust
Salary: Accommodation provided
Location: Isle of Eigg, Scotland
Hours: Either
Position type: Volunteer
Contract: Temporary
Closing date: Fri 30 May 14
Website: scottishwildlifetrust.org.uk
Contact name: Tasha Lancaster
Contact email: volunteer@isleofeigg.net

Volunteer Role / Title Community & Conservation Volunteer Location Isle of Eigg, Small Isles, PH42 4RL How many volunteers are needed? 3 in May & 2 in June How many hours per day/per week do we need you for? 5-7hrs/day – 5days/wk – May & June 2014 On which days are you needed? Monday – Friday / Saturday & Sunday off On what date do we want you to start? ASAP Minimum commitment required from the volunteer (eg 1 day per week for 6 months). If any. 1 week minimum but you can stay for up to 2 months. The accommodation can accommodate up to 3 volunteers at any one time. Objective(s) of the volunteer role Volunteers on Eigg work amidst the fresh sea air, live, eat and work with like-minded people, learn about conservation management through practical work and direct observation, have an insight into island life and contributing enormously to the islands infrastructure. Tasks • Beach cleans, marine litter monitoring, litter picking, bramble & bracken management, herb garden weeding, natural regeneration management, helping with community events and ceilidhs or if you can bring a specific skill to the island then please let us know in your application form. Description of the personal attributes/skills/qualifications required • Enthusiastic caring folk with a love for the outdoors. Work well as part of a team, at times volunteers will be without supervision so it is essential that you are self-motivated and can work independently. Support/training? All volunteers will have an induction to their volunteering role that involves an overview of the relevant policies and procedures and what is expected of them and vice versa. Following induction, volunteers will have regular support and supervision meetings, discussions to identify areas for development, or to discuss any issues. Training is provided to ensure safety is paramount to the volunteer and others whilst working with tools. Who is the contact person/line manager for enquiries? Tasha Lancaster, volunteer@isleofeigg.net Closing date for applications 30/05/14 When will interviews be held? N/A – Application forms, informal telephone discussions & emails are used as our selection process Can SWT provide expenses e.g. for travel or branded clothing? Unfortunately not. Will you want references from volunteers before appointing or PVGdisclosure? No Other (Any age restriction, lifts available? Disabled access?) Age restriction 18yrs. Due to the location, terrain and activities a good level of fitness and common sense is required. Accommodation is provided on the island by the Isle of Eigg Heritage Trust for which a contribution of £15 per week is required to help with household running costs. Food – there is a well stocked shop on the island, but if staying for longer periods then you could bring basic items such as pasta/rice over in bulk.

Aquarist Volunteer

Organisation: Falmouth Aquarium
Location: Falmouth
Hours: Either
Position type: Volunteer
Contract: Fixed Term Contract
Closing date: Mon 02 June 14
Website: www.falmouthaquarium.com
Contact name: Chloe Kingston
Contact telephone: 0132611211
Contact email: falmouthaquarium@gmail.com

The Falmouth Aquarium is now looking for summer aquarist interns to assist the senior aquarist with day to day fish care and husbandry duties. Internship Position: The Falmouth Aquarium aquarist summer intern will assist the manager in the day to day tasks of running an aquarium with tropical and Cornish marine life. You will be actively involved and hands on, learning about how to care for both tropical fish and cold water UK fish. You will be trained to provide daily husbandry for a diverse collection of marine fishes and invertebrates. Through one-on-one training and hands-on exercises, you will become competent in the care and maintenance of each of our exhibits. You will also learn how to work for a small marine conservation charity. If you are intersted, you have the opportunity to learn and gain skills in fundraising, business skills, grant writing, youth outreach and education and other skills. You will also be offered an array of professional development courses during your internship, which could include (but subject to availability): ‘Managing People’, ‘Team Leading’, ‘Marketing Award’, ‘Business Skills’, ‘Teaching Award’, ‘Youth Leadership’ and other course that come up. The Summer Aquarist Internship Position is 10 weeks in duration, with two options during the summer term. The first internship opportunity begins on June 2nd until August 10th, and the second position begins on July 7th and ends on September 8th. These dates may be flexible depending on circumstances. Responsibilities: Primary responsibilities for our interns will include, but are not limited to: – daily food preparation and feeding – exhibit and behind-the-scenes cleaning – record keeping – Water quality testing and maintenance – animal observation – guest interpretation – quarantine procedures optional: – grant research and writing – youth education – public speaking – supervising skills – managing skills – business admin – marketing experience Qualifications, Skills, Knowledge and Abilities for position: • Desire to work in close proximity to marine fish and invertebrates. • Willingness to get wet and dirty. • Strong communication skills and the ability to communicate effectively to staff and visitors alike. •Ability to manage multiple tasks. . interest in marine conservation and the marine field Desired: • knowledge of ecological and biological principles, especially those relating to marine habitats. • Some background knowledge of marine aquarium keeping. Selection: To apply, please send your CV and covering letter in an email to falmouthaquarium@gmail.com All qualified applicants will be contacted by email to schedule a skype video interview or an in person interview with our Aquarist Internship Coordinator. Candidates will be competitively selected on the basis of knowledge, abilities, experience, attitude, reliability, and punctuality. The Falmouth Aquarium The Falmouth Aquarium is located in a four storey townhouse in the centre of Falmouth, a town full of maritime history and culture. Our exhibits bring the public closer to fish – we provide a more personal experience with corals, small colourful and rare tropical fish and the chance to see tiny creatures that live under the sea that the public wouldn’t normally be able to observe, rather than focusing on large marine mammals like other aquariums. The Aquarium is a small charity, with large goals and ambitions. Our mission is to educate the general public on the various challenges facing our marine environment both now and in the future. Our objective is to inform the public on current marine conservation issues in locally, nationally and internationally

Living Seas Fisheries & Wildlife Voluntary Trainee

Organisation: Yorkshire Wildlife Trust
Salary: Voluntary
Location: Flamborough
Hours: Part Time
Position type: Volunteer
Contract: Fixed Term Contract
Closing date: Fri 30 May 14
Website: www.ywt.org.uk
Contact name: Jo Meays
Contact telephone: 01904 659570
Contact email: jo.meays@ywt.org.uk

With support from the European Fisheries Fund we have now started an exciting new programme to engage and work with the Yorkshire coast shellfish industry to encourage responsible fishing methods. This programme also includes delivery of events and production of materials to show the links between a productive fishery and healthy marine environment. You will gain experience in:-

  • Assisting with the preparation of fisheries events such as food festivals and edible ocean workshops.
  • Assisting with the delivery of Living Seas Safari boat trips by providing a commentary for members of the public.
  • Assisting with the day-to-day running of The Living Seas Centre including occasional tasks with school groups.
  • Assisting with and taking a lead on the running of public awareness events.
  • Recruiting new members to YWT through the Living Seas Centre.
  • Raising the profile for Yorkshire Wildlife Trusts Living Seas work, through social media and press releases, and keeping people informed of exciting sightings, events and campaigns.
  • Following training, support YWTs Snorkel and Seasearch programme
  • Assist with coordination of small projects such as Waves of Waste and the non native species plates.

This placement is for 6-12 months, 3-5 days a week, including occasional evenings and weekends, and comes with a training budget for external training; a varied internal training program and reasonable travel expenses. To apply see our trainee webpage by clicking ‘more information’ below; email jo.meays@ywt.org.uk or phone 01904 659570 Closing date: 30th May 2014 by noon Interview date: 9th June 2014

REF        1273-VOL-30/5

JOB        COMMUNITY & CONSERVATION VOLUNTEERS x 5

BE4        ASAP (Opportunities Available May & June)

LOC        ISLE OF EIGG

PAY        Subsidised accommodation available

FOR        ISLE OF EIGG HERITAGE TRUST

DES        Opportunities to live and work on the wonderful island of Eigg.  Help the local community by undertaking a mixture of practical work such as beach cleans, marine litter monitoring, bramble & bracken management and helping with community events .BUT   Minimum 1 week stay up to 2 months.  £15 per week contribution towards accommodation running costs will be required from  each volunteer.  You will need to provide your own food.   ASK   Contact Tasha Lancaster volunteer@isleofeigg.net and see volunteer page atwww.scottishwildlifetrust.org.uk

As well as identifying courses or training that would suitable towards this specialisation.

Although I still acknowledge this a desirable specialisation and will continue to look for general opportunities that will guide me towards gaining greater access and relevant contacts/associations with environmental and conservation organisations. This will likely start with some of the position I listed as local volunteer opportunities.

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