Volunteer to spend quality time assisting in the conservation of majestic wild elephants! Working with the Sri Lanka Wildlife Conservation Society, the project develops conservation methods to conserve a number of species and their natural environments in the Central and North Central provinces of Sri Lanka. Staying on the project for 4 weeks, you’ll spend 3 weeks observing the wild elephants in Wasgamuwa National Park and 1 week assisting on the turtle conservation project. Your observations will begin from the jungle tree hut where you will have an idyllic view of the nature around the camp site. Your role here will then become more active as you carry out research into elephant behaviour; human and elephant interactions, including conflicts; biodiversity mapping and the resolution of human and elephant conflicts. You’ll be trained in the use of GPS in planning conservation strategies for elephants, leopards, and other wild animals in the area. Also having an input into the centre’s security, you’ll be monitoring electric fences and early warning alert systems. At the end of your experience, you’ll meet with local leaders and villagers to discuss the challenges of rural sustainability.
Week 1 – 3 Monday to Friday
During these 3 weeks you will spend time observing these magnificent animals in their natural habitats, therefore, the timings of your activities will depend on the elephants. You can expect to assist with all aspects of elephant research. Using survey techniques you will map biodiversity, creating an information bank for future use. You’ll assess elephant behaviour through the monitoring of human and elephant interactions, often involving some kind of conflict and resolution. Safety of the local villages, their homes and crops is protected by electric fences and an early alert system which you will monitor as part of your role. You will participate in a meeting with local leaders and villagers to discuss the challenges of sustainable rural development.
Your last week at the project will be spent assisting on the Turtle Conservation Project at Ambalangoda. Set amongst paradisiacal beaches, the conservation project rescues and rehabilitates injured turtles. Your first 2 days will be spent learning about the project, the turtles and their environment. Then on the last 3 days you will be able to contribute to the project by taking a more active role.