National Whale and Dolphin Watch Assistant

Sea Watch Foundation
January 21, 2019
Cardigan Bay, United Kingdom
Job Type
Closing date
10th March 2019


The Sea Watch Foundation is seeking a voluntary National Whale and Dolphin Watch Assistant for the 2019 season. This position will suit a volunteer who has a strong interest in marine conservation and recognises the importance of educating and raising awareness by involving the public. Given the competitive nature of our internships and to allow others to gain experience, this position is only available to undergraduates or people who can demonstrate a desired change in career.

The assistant will be responsible in aiding the Sightings Officer with the following duties:

  • Promoting, organising and running the National Whale and Dolphin Watch event (27th July – 4th August 2019)
  • Producing posters and resources for dissemination around the UK
  • Using initiative and creativity to reach out to wider audience
  • Keeping records of planned events
  • Updating webpage with events
  • Assisting with social media surrounding the event
  • Posting observer packs to participants in a timely manner
  • Taking part in land-based surveys in Cardigan Bay
  • Helping to staff the ‘Dolphin Hub’ educational facility
  • Assisting Education and Outreach Assistant with event planning and execution
  • Encouraging data submission and website updates during the event
  • Collating data and imagery from the event.
  • Entering event data on to database template.

The National Whale and Dolphin Watch Assistant will also have some opportunity to be involved in the boat-based fieldwork aspects of the “Cardigan Bay Monitoring Project”, however this will be depended on workload and will be agreed between the assistant and the Sightings Officer each time the opportunity arises. This project manages the conservation of a coastal population of bottlenose dolphins, the largest in the UK. Monitoring of harbour porpoise and grey seal populations is also part of the project.

The field season will run from April to October 2019 and has been split into four periods of seven weeks for Research Interns. Our National Whale and Dolphin Watch Assistant is required to stay for the middle two periods of the season. The assistant will be based in New Quay, West Wales, and he/she will be helped in finding a suitable accommodation. The assistant is responsible for their own travel and living expenses, but it is generally quite easy to obtain part-time paid work in the area if required.

National Whale and Dolphin Watch Assistant periods for summer 2019:
Periods 2 & 3: 27/05 – 01/09

Important skills/qualifications


  • A strong interest in marine conservation and education
  • Out going personality with confidence to interact with the public
  • excellent verbal and writing skills
  • must have initiative and bring their own ideas and personality to the position
  • strong commitment to volunteering work
  • an ability to work in an organised and reliable manner and to manage a variable workload, including appropriate delegation
  • good IT skills (Office package)
  • an ability to get on well with others in a small team and within shared accommodation


  • a strong interest and some knowledge of British cetaceans
  •  prior experience in public speaking
  • experience with postings on social media
  • experience of events organising
  • willingness to work long hours outdoors in often very changeable Welsh weather

To apply:
Please send your CV and a cover letter reporting any relevant experience you have, as well as contact details of two referees, to Dr Chiara Giulia Bertulli (

It is strongly recommended that you reference all the essential and desirable attributes in your application.

Deadline: 10th March 2019 at 9am.

Please specify “National Whale and Dolphin Watch Assistant” into your subject title.

Applicants must be available for interview via Skype between the 11th and 17th March and will be notified of the outcomes by the 24th March 2019.


The Sea Watch Foundation
The Sea Watch Foundation is a national marine environmental research charity that aims to achieve better conservation of whales and dolphins in the seas around Britain and Ireland, by involving the public in scientific monitoring of populations and the threats they face. It is the longest-running research charity in UK focusing upon cetaceans around the British Isles, and maintains a national sightings database, the largest in Europe. It works closely with all the UK statutory conservation agencies, and has provided advice to the UK government, the UNEP Regional intergovernmental Conservation Agreement - ASCOBANS, and the European Commission, as well as the major conservation charities and marine industries operating in the UK.

Public awareness
We aim to raise awareness and understanding of the importance of the marine wildlife and the habitats supporting them, to encourage respect and conservation of the marine environment for future generations. We also run training courses for the public in cetacean identification and survey methods.

A list of recent of recent awareness and education achievements is given below:
* Sea Watch Director, Peter Evans, received the European Cetacean Society Conservation Award, 2012
* Sea Watch Foundation was recipient of the UNEP/ASCOBANS “Outreach and Education Award”, 2009
* Sea Watch Foundation was voted best UK animal adoption scheme by BBC Wildlife, December 2008

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