Volunteers are vital to the sustainability of the Trusts core activities. Volunteers make our research work possible, contribute to key education projects and help run our Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Centre in Tobermory.  At HWDT we value the skills and time given by volunteers and understand that their enthusiasm and dedication contributes greatly to what we achieve.

Volunteers come from all walks of life, each bringing an invaluable range of skills, knowledge and experience which greatly benefits the Trust.  We have hosted volunteers from many countries and welcome volunteers of different ages. We also benefit greatly from the help of volunteers from our local community who have contributed many hours and expertise over the years.

To volunteer you don’t have to be a marine or cetacean expert, our projects include thorough training. However, some of our projects do require specific skills, so please read the relevant project information carefully before applying and be realistic about your suitability.

What volunteers learn and gain is as varied as their backgrounds. For example, on board Silurian  volunteers get full training in scientific research techniques, and benefit greatly from having marine science and sailing experts constantly on hand. Volunteers have the opportunity to see an amazing variety of wildlife in its natural habitat, visit remote and beautiful places, and get to know and work closely with a small team of like-minded people.

Find out more about joining us aboard in 2017


Residential Volunteer Placements

Our 2017 land-based placements provides a fantastic opportunity for passionate, outgoing individuals to join our team based in the colourful and picturesque harbour town of Tobermory, on the Isle of Mull; where we have our office, Visitor Centre and the mooring for our research vessel Silurian.  We have opportunities for both those interested in cetacean research and education.  


The hard work and enthusiasm delivered by our volunteers contributes directly to increased knowledge and conservation of cetaceans in the Hebrides. Voluntary work is of great benefit to those considering a career in marine conservation or involving marine mammals as these career paths are highly competitive.


HWDT also receives many requests from students enquiring about the use of the Trusts comprehensive dataset in their thesis/dissertations.  Please read the guidelines below before enquiring about undertaking a project using HWDT resources. 


We list our volunteer opportunities on Conservation Jobs - Check them out if you're looking to volunteer in conservation.