Project hosts green turtles and hawksbills in natural sea water pool and tiled swimming pools. Turtles are brought in by local fishermen who have accidentally caught them in their fishing nets.
Turtles in this natural aquarium are one main tourist attraction in the area and many tourists visit the project during the day. Project collects an admission fee that are the main source of finances of the project.
Tourists are given a tour of the aquarium and information about sea turtles and conservation efforts.
In the aquarium also few other animals are hosted for educational purposes; land tortoises, monitor lizard and small crocodiles. It also hosts few abandoned cats and kittens. The beach in Nungwi used to be a turtle-nesting beach, but tourism development has made the beach so busy, that very rarely turtles are seen to come ashore here anymore. Turtles have moved to nest on more quiet beaches of Tumbatu and Mnemba Islands.
During the nesting season, project staff is sometimes called to check the turtle tracks and nests on these beaches. The main aim of the project is to protect the sea turtles and raise awareness on sea turtle conservation to local people and tourists.
Project accepts volunteers year-round. Minimum age is 18 years old. Younger volunteers may participate with a parent or with School Groups. Please inform us about any possible health restrictions or dietary requirements in advance. You are expected to work five days a week with two days off.
Volunteers can also help to support the community by teaching English at the local kindergarten, organize adult language lessons and themselves learn Swahili or local crafts. Nungwi is known for its well-crafted wooden boats, dhows, and we can arrange a course in dhow building for extra cost.
DOLPHIN RESEARCH PROGRAM SCHEDULE
You will either be staying in Jambiani or Kizimkazi, where you will spend most of your time as a volunteer. Small villages located on the southern part of Zanzibar’s beautiful and quiet east coast. About an hour’s drive from Stone Town, Jambiani is a long village stretched along the coastline, with stunning white sandy beaches where it will seem like you can walk forever. Just half an hour’s drive from Jambiani, towards the south-West of Zanzibar, you can discover the peaceful village of Kizimkazi. Here you will find communities operating at a leisurely pace in the sunny tropical climate.
Team takes care of the aquarium area and cleans turtle pools, tanks and juvenile turtles. After the cleaning activities volunteers can have their breakfast prepared for them. If the tide is low in the morning and there is need for more food for the turtles, the team will go out and collect seaweed for the turtles.
During the day volunteers and staff are mainly doing tours for the tourists. Time can also be used for studying turtle knowledge and discussing with the team. Later in the afternoon, volunteers will help to feed the juvenile turtles. There may be additional activities depending on the project situation and season.
Team will organize a beach cleaning about once a week and may also visit the nesting beaches of Tumbatu.
ü Monitoring the dolphins for various research purposes (i.e., behaviour, feeding, daily habits, reaction to humans, numbers, photos of dolphin pods)
ü Providing research data for the Institute of Marine Science in Stone Town
ü Marine Conservation Club with kids from the local high school
ü Helping to develop an area to raise awareness about dolphins, whales, sharks and other types of fish; the local marine ecosystem and local marine conservation
ü Monitor dolphins in their natural habitat and study the impact of tourism on their behavior.
ü Snorkel in beautiful coral reefs whilst collecting vital coral bleaching data.
ü Swim with dolphins in an ethical way whilst promoting responsible dolphin tourism.
ü Teach enthusiastic conservation club students and inspire them to look after their environment.
ü Help protect coral reefs at risk of exploitation.
ü Learn how to identify fish and coral in the Indian Ocean while diving amongst tropical islands.
ü Interact with the local community, learn Swahili, and live in one of the most beautiful places in the world!