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Coastal Impact Internship


Nature's Valley Trust


Nature's Valley, Plettenberg Bay (Southern Shore of South Africa)


South Africa

Last Date to Apply:

20 Jul 2017


Coastal Impact Internship in South Africa




DURATION: 3-6 months; Breeding season runs Sept. to April, with flexibility for internship timing. You will have most shorebird related field time from Sept. to Jan.; if you choose an internship from Jan., there is less shorebird related field work, but carries the benefit of data management & analysis. The other two components of this internship, marine debris and linefisheries work, will be done throughout the 6-month period.


Shorebird programme
Monitoring hatchling success rate for two coastal breeding species, the White-fronted Plover and African Black Oystercatcher, on three beaches (Nature’s Valley, Keurbooms and Plettenberg Bay) along the southern coast of South Africa. During the breeding season, we survey beaches for nests, GPS them and monitor them from the time eggs are laid until the chicks fledge. We also keep track of new fledges by ringing them to monitor them over time. Additionally, we interact with the public to increase awareness around the birds that breed on our beaches and the importance of sharing our shores with marine and coastal life.


Marine Debris Programme
NVT is extremely concerned about litter and how it finds its way onto our beaches. For our marine debris work, we survey the beach every month, documenting every litter item on the beach as well as the beach-users at that time. This data is then used to determine the percentage contribution each user-group makes to the litter problem on the beach. With this data, we can develop targeted educational programmes to address this problem with the specific user-group(s) at fault.


Line-fisheries impact programme
Fisherman surveys are conducted six times a month on Nature’s Valley and Keurbooms beaches. These surveys are designed to gather information about fishing stocks in our waters. We also gather information on fishermen awareness around regulations and reasons for fishing eg. recreational, subsistence etc. From the data gathered we have developed fisherman’s packs to help educate and fill the gaps on the rules and regulations. Our approach is to help educate where needed and not to accuse those that do not know or follow regulations.



Self-motivated, flexibility, work independently & with others, while following methodology & procedure.

Trustworthy, show integrity & dedication, sense of responsibility/accountability.

Observational skills, with particular attention to detail & accuracy.

An interest in birds and coastal conservation research.

Physical fitness, willingness to spend long hours in the field, in potentially adverse conditions (i.e. up to 12 hrs walking in soft sand & some rock scrambling, in summer heat with salt spray & wind, carrying pack)

Ability to engage with the public regarding research & conservation.

Preferably have or be studying toward a qualification in a related biological field, such as: Zoology, Ecology, Ornithology, Conservation Biology, Environmental Science, Nature Conservation, Wildlife/Natural Resource/Integrated Coastal Zone Management, Environmental Education, etc.

Some experience with GPS/GIS technology & software beneficial, but not required.



Residing in Natures Valley, on South Africas Garden Route, a stunning location surrounded by beautiful beaches, forests, mountains, & breathtaking landscapes, with plenty of exciting activities available during off time.

Working with a fantastic environmental NGO on a highly impactful project, affiliated with the TOP university & leading academic institute in Ornithology on the African continent!

You will get individual support & hands-on training in the field.

Opportunity for involvement in other projects (bird banding, education programs, etc.).

The Nature’s Valley Trust is willing to discuss requirements with your university for study credits.



R5,500 per month, which covers shared housing/utilities, field transportation, office space (including WiFi), project materials & equipment, program participation, & mentoring.

The Natures Valley Trust unfortunately cannot offer assistance with travel costs or other living expenses. Cost of living is comparatively low in South Africa.



If interested, please send CV & short motivation letter, or any other enquiries via e-mail with the subject “COASTAL IMPACT INTERNSHIP” to: Info@naturesvalleytrust.co.za.

For more information on the Natures Valley Trust & the work we do, see our Facebook page at https://www.facebook...resvalleytrust/


Also check out our Facebook add here