Join Us Onboard
HWDT conducts cetacean surveys throughout our field season (May - September) from on board our research yacht Silurian.
Every year we welcome onboard enthusiastic volunteers who are willing to contribute directly to our research work. Volunteers, in effect, become marine mammal scientists for the duration of the survey; living and working aboard Silurian, assisting with day-to-day running, as well as working together as a team to carry out visual and acoustic surveys. To find out more about the research onboard please click here.
"The team was very knowledgeable and committed to conservation in the Hebrides and left us with the conviction that the data that we gathered was contributing to establishing an important base-line picture.” Graham Dock, 2009
Volunteers will assist fully in the collection of data with mega-fauna and sea bird identification training provided. Acoustic and visual methods are combined to produce comprehensive data sets. During encounters, photographs are taken of dorsal fins to try and identify the individual, gaining a better understanding of species movements and interactions with each other. The data collected, and subsequent information produced, is essential when monitoring the distribution, relative abundance and habitat preference of cetacean species in the Hebrides. Only with coherent data can effective conservation and management strategies be designed to enable long-term protection of the amazing species found in our waters.
"Those 12 days sailing around the Hebrides changed my life. I do not regret anything about this trip. If I could, I would dedicate my whole life to the aid of nature." Lars Rumpel, May 2011
As a volunteer onboard Silurian, you will have the opportunity to see first hand the amazing variety of marine wildlife Britain has to offer including whales, dolphins, porpoises, seals, sharks and seabirds. You will explore some of the remotest, wildest parts of the British Isles, anchoring each night in a different secluded bay off one of the many Hebridean islands, venturing ashore to explore. The opportunity to gain sailing experience is also available, although no certificates are issued.
Rendezvous location is Tobermory on the Isle of Mull, where HWDT is based. More information on specific surveys will be provided on request. There is a monetary value attached to participating, costs vary between £900 - £1,200 - this includes accommodation (on board) and food throughout the duration. The income generated allows HWDT to continue this well established research programme, you can be assured that without your contribution the research couldn't be undertaken.
All berths are now full for the 2013 field season. If you would like to be informed of our 2014 survey dates when they become available, please follow us on Facebook or sign-up to our E-newsletter by entering your email address in the box below.
We are running a Teen Team Cetacean Research Survey, the dates are outlined below. Please follow the link for more information.
- 22nd - 28th July TEEN TEAM (16-17 year olds only)