Work closely with marine biologists at the Great white shark capital of the world, Gansbaai in the southern Cape. Be part of ongoing projects that study shark behavior, Cape Fur seals, whales and other marine life, assist with penguin conservation, enjoy shark cage diving and whale watching.
Some of the duties on the boats:
- Assisting with tracking activities
- Shark ID, general shark and bird photos
- Bird sighting sheets
- Data capture / Baitline & Decoy handling
- Collecting water samples
- Chum trips
- Preparing and cleaning of boat
On land duties include:
- Electronic data and log book entry
- Photographic fin ID quality control
- Shark egg species ID and measurements
- Clean-up campaigns
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There will be occasional off days or due to bad weather where you will not be at sea. The coordinators will will arrange an educational or fun activity, or lectures. Activities could include:
- A trip to Cape Agulhas – the southernmost point of Africa
- A visit to the local heritage site Klipgat Cave
- A visit to Stony Point penguin colony in Betty’s Bay
- Kelp diving at Stanford Cove
- Horse Riding
- Shopping excursions and wine tasting in Hermanus or Cape Town
- Visit Danger Point Lighthouse
- Hikes in the local area
- Visit to Strandveld Museum
- River boat cruises along Stanford River
- Two Oceans Aquarium shark tank dives can be arranged at a discount for our volunteers
- Visit to the Two Oceans Aquarium and the Waterfront in Cape Town
Accommodation and Meals
Accommodation is at The Birkenhead Lodge which has 4 fully furnished chalets that house between 4 and 6 persons per chalet, with own bathroom, kitchen and living areas. There is a spacious living area in the main hall with a TV and internet access, a pool table, table tennis, communal indoor barbeque and kitchen area that can be used. A swimming pool and garden is also available. Laundry service is at an extra cost.
A basic breakfast and a light lunch on board the boat will be provided. Should you be participating in other activities you may be responsible for your own lunch. Evening meals and other entertainment are at your own expense. Your accommodation has a fully equipped kitchen and barbeque area.
This one week minimum internship is open throughout the year and can be extended for a few weeks. For stays of 4 weeks or longer, a donation is made from your fee towards a conservation trust and the money is being used for African penguin conservation. Interns receive a certificate of completion.
Arrival and Departure
Arrive on a Sunday in Cape Town and take a shuttle to your accommodation in Cape Town. Our office can assist you with accommodation but it has to be booked and paid for by yourself. Most reputable hotels/lodges offer a shuttle service from the airport.
You will be picked up from your accommodation on Monday morning and transferred to Gansbaai, a 2.5h drive. On arrival at the program you will be fully briefed and have the opportunity to meet the team including a personal supervisor who will be available to you throughout your stay.
You will be dropped off at the airport or at your accommodation in Cape Town on a Monday, the last day of your program. Please ensure that your departure flight is booked after 5:00pm. Also make sure that you have at least one hour layover time in Johannesburg for your connecting flight. If your departure from Cape Town is before 5:00pm, then you may have to leave the program a day earlier or stay one extra night in Cape Town to avoid any problems.
The program coordinator lives next to the lodge for your support, and the main office is a 10 min. walk from the lodge. A safe is also available at the office to store personal belongings.
We suggest that you enjoy a few days in Cape Town and explore the beautiful surroundings such as Table Mountain, Cape Point, Robben Island, wine route etc. before returning home. We also recommend a tour up the Garden Route or to other tourist attractions in the region. All personal excursions can be booked prior to travelling to South Africa or while you are at the program. Optional excursions are at your own cost.
- The project runs throughout the year.
- Interns are required to book a minimum of one week.
- There is no specific booking date, but full payments need to be made 2 months prior to the commencement of the program.
- Any person above the age of 18 years is encouraged to apply.
- Once we have received your booking form you will be pre-booked on the program and be sent a confirmation letter.
- After receiving the deposit, your place on the project is secured.
- Eko Tracks will also send you a pre-departure package with information about the passport, flight schedules, vaccinations, and a packing list to assist you in preparing for the trip.
Prices: No price increase for 2017
1 week US$ 790
2 weeks US$ 1,290
3 weeks US$ 1,750
4 weeks US$ 2,050
Each additional week US$ 450
Deposit: US$ 400
Outstanding Amount: Payable 2 months prior to commencement of the internship
- Transfer from Cape Town to the program and back.
- Accommodation and two meals a day (BL)
- Transportation on-site
- On-site orientation and training
- All marine activities as listed
- Full time staff members to supervise and support interns
Why Travel With Eko Tracks
Variety: Our large variety of products, offer great travel opportunities for adventurers and outdoor enthusiasts with a passion for nature.
Expertise: With an intimate scientific knowledge of the African savanna and its wildlife, first-hand personal travel experiences and destination expertise, we offer a wealth of information to our clients.
Network: Having lived in Africa for more than 40 years and drawing on extensive long term business relationships we provide you with specially selected quality products.
Dedication: We are passionate about Africa with its large vistas, a plethora of wildlife unmatched anywhere else, and a diversity of cultures unique to this continent. But above all, we are dedicated to conservation through education.
“I learned so much and the interactive field work and labs were especially beneficial. Amazing! The best choice I’ve ever made with my life. It opened my eyes to everything going on here and was life changing. Samantha, Veterinary Field Study 2018.”
“I learned a lot about conservation that I didn’t before especially about the elephant problem, and the effects of game farming, hunting, poaching in SA. Mary, Veterinary Field Study 2018
“This was an amazing program and I would do it 10,000 times if I could. I learned so much and got to participate and see so much that I never would have in any other program. Amanda, Veterinary Field Study 2018
Wildlife Veterinary Course