Sea Turtle Conservation Project (Campamento Majahaus)

volunteer sea turtle conservation project in mexico
  • Save the sea turtles from extinction through conservation efforts
  • Gain hands-on experience as a field worker alongside local conservation professionals
  • Immerse in the Mexican culture working alongside the locals
  • Practice Spanish and bask in the beautiful pristine beaches of Mexico

Love turtles? Then be part of a team that helps save turtles in a remote but gorgeous beach on the Pacific Coast of Mexico! Over the past two decades, fishermen on the beach where the project is located have documented a very sharp decline in the number of Olive Ridley Turtles that are coming on shores to lay eggs. The fishermen were so alarmed in their findings, that they have initiated this conservation effort themselves. The Olive Ridley Turtles were hunted in the thousands for its meat and the leather, and the eggs are constantly poached from the beaches. Despite conservation efforts, the turtles have yet to recover from centuries of over-exploitation. This project works closely with the local fishermen and villagers in order to preserve and protect the breeding ground and the eggs. Volunteer in Mexico in the Sea Turtle Conservation project and save the majestic animals from extinction while enjoying the warm Mexican hospitality on unspoiled, white beaches.

Volunteers' Responsibilities

As a volunteer in the Turtle Conservation project in Mexico, you will be supporting local conservation efforts focusing mainly on protecting nesting sites, incubation and the releasing of hatchlings. Depending on the individual’s skills and expertise, and the needs of the local staff, your daily duties include but are not limited to:

  • Day and night beach patrols of nesting sites to protect turtles and eggs from poachers
  • Hatchery shifts that run about six hours
  • Recording data about turtles
  • Relocating turtle nests
  • Keeping predators away
  • Taking carapace and nest-dimension measurements
  • Tagging rear flippers of turtles
  • Trail and beach maintenance and clean-up
  • Providing information to tourists
  • Educating the locals on turtle conservation
  • Measuring and releasing hatchlings
  • Assisting local organizations with fundraising
  • Helping with website development and advertising
  • Assisting local organizations with conservation campaigns
  • Providing organizations with organizational and administrative tasks
How You Can Make a Difference

If you're looking to embark on a career in turtle conservation, biological sciences or community development, this is the perfect opportunity for you. As a volunteer, you'll be able to learn about ecology and the conservation of sea turtles. You'll also be able to experience the life of a conservation field worker, and take on an active roll in patrolling the beaches at night, assisting in data collection, and relocating and keeping track of the eggs. Conservation efforts focus on strengthening the sea turtle populations by supporting their breeding efforts, along with protecting and feeding them. Volunteers will also be working with the local community to implement turtle management strategies that are imposed by the Costa Rican government.

Skills and Qualifications

There are no specific qualifications needed to volunteer in the Turtle Conservation project. Much of the turtle conservation work is physical in nature, so volunteers need to be in good physical health, and able to walk long distances due to the frequent patrols. No previous training is needed, as on-site training will be given upon arrival to the camp. Basic Spanish skills may be helpful for communication with the locals, but not necessary in order to take part in the project. If you cannot speak Spanish, we recommend enrolling in our Spanish Language Studies program. This project is ideal for volunteers studying or interested in biological sciences and/or community development, as well as anyone with a general interest in nature and the environment.

Project Location

The project is located on a beautiful beach on the Pacific Coast of Mexico, known as Campamento Majahuas. This is a very rural and a quite place, with local communities staying close by. The camp is located on the beach in an area between the sea and the lagoon. The facilities will be very basic but volunteers will enjoy the landscape, pristine nature and the hospitality of the local people. You will be provided with three meals a day which in the camp by the volunteers/staff. One large meal is prepared at lunch by the local community.

During free time, you will have many opportunities to explore the local environment. The camp is isolated, but surrounded by beaches and nature. Free time is usually spent resting, reading, walking, or playing games with other volunteers such as volleyball, football etc. There are also opportunities to take a break for a few days and visit Melaque or Puerto Vallarta. These locations are located about 2 hours away by bus. The costs for those trips must be provided through the volunteer and are optional.

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