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Kenya Conservation Internship Research cetacean populations

Kenya Conservation Internship Research cetacean populations, study coastal forest biodiversity, gain a qualification in tropical habitat survey techniques, develop skills and knowledge to support a career in conservation.


Developing skills in personnel management, leadership and expedition logistics. Joining Kenya’s only long term cetacean population research project, learning boat-based survey and photo identification skills. Snorkeling Kenya’s finest reefs surveying turtles and other marine life within the Kisite-Mpunguti Marine Protected Area.

Undertaking research in East Africa’s coastal forests, a globally recognized Biodiversity Hotspot, assessing threatened primate populations and learning behavioural research skills. Living and working amongst a remote Indian Ocean island community, amongst diverse tropical habitats; being immersed in the traditional Swahili culture of the Kenyan coast.

Introduction to TEFL course with experience teaching both adults and children; Working under Kenya Wildlife Service and with many other partners to promote sustainable development and help conserve some of East Africa’s most important remaining coastal habitats. Studying dolphins and colobus monkeys, other endangered or endemic fauna, opportunities to see whale sharks, humpback whales or spinner dolphins depending on the season. Learn swahili language and work alongside Kenyan students and researchers. Become a qualified first aid instructor and gain a recognized BTEC qualification in Tropical Habitat Survey Techniques.            

Skills And Qualifications Received

Boat handling and driving around marine mammals induction; For an extra cost PADI dive courses including PADI Open Water and Advanced Open Water, PADI Rescue Diver and PADI Dive Master certifications; First Aid, CPR & Instructor training; Cetacean identification, biology and survey skills; Turtle identification, biology and survey skills; Primate identification, biology and survey skills; Biodiversity assessment skills; BTEC qualification in Tropical Habitat Survey Techniques; Introduction to TEFL; Environmental Education; Health, safety and environment awareness; Interpersonal skills; Leadership skills; Community relations skills.            


Located about two and half hours from Mombasa, within the Shimoni archipelago, close to the border with Tanzania, the base is situated on Wasini Island, adjacent to the Kisite-Mpunguti Marine Protected Area, protecting Kenya’s finest coral reefs. Base is situated in the rural fishing village of Mkwiro, home to a traditional community that boasts a proud history. The island is reached from the mainland village of Shimoni, 14km along the peninsula from the main Mombasa – Tanzania road. Shimoni itself has been designated a Historic Conservation Area. About an hour and half away is the nearest town, Ukunda and neighbouring tourist resort of Diani, famous for its long white sand beaches.  In between your expedition and internship is a 2 to 3 week break, interns are welcome to stay at base camp where food will be provided or are free to explore the surrounding areas.            

Field Conditions

This base is set on the cliffs overlooking the Wasini channel, and next to the village of Mkwiro, with stunning views along the channel towards the Tanzanian coast. Accommodation is in shared dormitories with bunk beds, sleeping up to 8, in a locally built house with a separate communal ‘banda’ (traditional thatch hut) for cooking and dinning. There is no fresh water on the island and we rely on storing rainwater during the wet season, which is reserved for drinking and cooking. Washing is by bucket showers with daily collections of sea water – or bathing directly in the sea! Electricity is limited, from solar panels with generator back up, and is reserved for expedition needs. During the coastal forest research you will be at our satellite base in Shimoni, in shared tents, where running water and mains electricity is available.            

What's Included

Airport pick-up and transfer to base; all food and accommodation, training materials and science equipment; an ‘Introduction to TEFL’ (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) course; BTEC qualification in Tropical Habitat Survey Techniques comprehensive training necessary for research techniques; an ‘Emergency First Aid’ course; 24-hour in-country support and a 24-hour emergency phone line.
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