Comoros Conservation volunteer Work! Volunteer for August-November new season! We are recruiting now!!!! Limited Offers! Wow and 1,2,3…. Humpback whales! and what? 200-300 Electra dolphins! What a good day! It is not always like this but it is very likely that you will experience such a day when volunteering with Go Volunteer Africa in Comoros.
You come to study the wild cetaceans of the islands of the moon. Moheli and Grande Comores are maybe one of the most remarkable place to study cetaceans with peace of mind. A group of humpback whale is migrating up from Antarctica, using ancient routes along the east Africa, it is called the C group.
It migrates along 4 corridors. The C1 group is taking the route South Africa, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya. The C2 group is going along the west coast of Madagascar to come and breed in Comoros, North west Madagascar and south islands of Seychelles. The C3 group is migrating along the East coast of Madagascar and breed in St Marie and the C4 group go up to Reunion island, Mauritius.
Our C2 group is coming to Comoros to meet, reproduce, give birth and educate the little new born calves. We are crossing different groups of different composition but with a large majority of duo (Mother and calf), then single (males, or very pregnant female ready to pop or teenagers just in quest of independence) and finally group of competitive males fighting for the heart of the beloved one!
What will be your duty as a Volunteer?
You have to believe that being a volunteer is full of responsibilities and in no way a passive commitment. You have chosen to come and volunteer for us and this involves a few duties. We like to underline that we are not a holiday resort and not a whale watching company, we are collecting important data for marine mammal conservation in the Comoros. We are waiting for a real engagement and initiative from you for the project.
Participating to all boat surveys and:
- Spot whales, dolphins, dugongs and turtles.
- help with photo-identification of animals
- help with video footage of animals
- help with recording of behavior (taking notes)
- help with boat preparation, equipment loading, boat unloading too.
- help with acoustic devices deployment
- help with genetic sampling (if operated)
- Beach cleaning
- help with food preparation, fire maintenance, wood collection, pealing etc…
- Team spirit, sharing experiences, your talents (music or whatever) and time, aperitifs….
- Data entry and analyze, photo id comparison.
- Participate to talks or presentation to the village or school or other (depending on plans).
The interest of the photo-identification is multiple and here we are looking at identify individuals within a population.
We want to follow this animal in the time but also in the space, assess if this individual is faithful to a group or to an area.
How that work?
We are trying to get pictures of body parts that can be recognizable form an individual to another.
- Humpback whales
- Bottlenose dolphins
- False Killer whales
- Spinner dolphins
- Pantropical dolphin
- Pygmy Killer whales
- Fraser’s dolphins
- Melon headed dolphins
Flukes work very well for humpback whales for example, and it is the best way to identify with certitude an individual. Unfortunately, our humpbacks like to rest in Comoros so they don’t dive and don’t show much their flukes. So what else???
The dorsal fin… yes that works but has its limitations. It works for identification of individuals within a local population and few individuals but at the scale of regional population it starts to show it limitation and for identification matching between populations that becomes too much of a challenge.
Simply we are trying to find ways to collect information to resolve our detective work. Once in the computer, it patience work to match, classify individuals. Then it is an even bigger job to analyze data and understand movements, association, dissociations, life expectation, population dynamics.
Each Whale and dolphin, get a name and an identification number and we record date, time, behavior, number of individuals in the pod.
HOW TO APPLY
Go Volunteer Africa will launch volunteer programs in Comoros in 2023. Reserve your placement at our Comoros conservation volunteer work program below. If you have any questions about Comoros volunteering, simply Make an inquiry here