• Gain experience and research skills in field biology and applied conservation under the supervision of professionals in the field

  • Apply your skills to on-the-ground biodiversity conservation and sustainable development projects, as well as independent research

Internships in the Peruvian Amazon

Our Internship Programs are designed to provide individuals—students, early-career or aspiring scientists, and/or those with a deeper interest in tropical biology or conservation—with the chance to learn through direct, hands-on engagement in basic scientific research and applied conservation projects spanning our two focal areas: biological research and monitoring and sustainable tropical agriculture.

 

Each of our three Internship Programs share a common academic structure that includes an exploration of topics in tropical biology and conservation through lectures, readings in the primary scientific literature, and through guided discussions and, of course, in-depth independent study. Scroll down to learn more about these exciting opportunities!

3 Different Opportunities:

  • 4 Weeks

  • Learn & contribute through hands-on activities in the field

  • 8 Weeks

  • Develop and implement a supervised Independent Research Project

  • 12 Weeks

  • In-depth Independent Research, excellent thesis opportunity 

*An application fee of $150 is due after registering for the Internship Program, which is non-refundable. Please read our Cancellation Policy, as well as our Terms and Conditions before making a payment. You will be given payment options upon completion of the Application Form (available here).

3. Academic

Quarter Internship

2. Advanced

Sustainability Internship

1. Introduction to Sustainability Internship

 

2017 Dates, Deadlines, & Fees

Internship Program

Introduction to

Sustainability

Advanced

Sustainability

Academic

Quarter

Duration

4 weeks

8 weeks

12 weeks

$325

Fee/week

$275

$250

Total Fees

$1,300

$2,200

$3,000

Session Dates

Session I

Jun 19 - Jul 14

Jun 19 - Aug 11

Jun 19 - Sept 8

Session II

Jul 17 - Aug 11

Aug 14 - Oct 6

--

Session III

Aug 14 - Sept 8

--

--

Session IV

Sept 11 - Oct 6

--

--

Session V

Nov 20 - Dec 15

--

--

Application & Payment Deadlines

May 26

Session I

May 26

May 26

June 30

Session II

July 28

--

July 28

Session III

--

--

August 25

Session IV

--

--

Session V

October 27

--

--

Faculty and Staff

Internships are overseen by our expert faculty and staff. Our Academic Supervisor is Dr. Geoff Gallice, who has 10+ years of experience working as a research scientist and conservationist in the Neotropics. Support is also provided by our Academic Programs Coordinator and our team of Resident Naturalists.

Skills Developed by Interns

All programs:

  • Training in basic field research skills, including off-trail navigation and use of GPS and GIS, techniques used in studies of tropical biodiversity, ecology, and conservation (e.g., experimental design, data collection and management, forest inventory plots, tree climbing and canopy access, wildlife and insect survey methods, camera trapping, etc.)

  • Identification of major Amazonian plant and animal groups (e.g., trees, mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians, insects and other invertebrates)

  • Sustainable tropical agriculture methods and practices

  • Weekly assigned readings on topics covering tropical biology, sustainable development, and conservation

  • Guided reading discussions from the primary literature

Advanced & Academic Quarter programs:

  • Advanced field research methodology through in-depth Independent Research Project

Example Intern Activities

Biological monitoring

  • Primate demography, spatial & feeding ecology of primates (brown titi monkeys & saddleback tamarins)

  • Biological inventories – insects, birds, mammals, trees/plants

  • Plant phenology (fruiting and flowering of select trees and plants) – to monitor changes over time in a changing climate

  • Artificial macaw nest boxes – use and occupancy 

 

Sustainable agriculture

  • Experimental agricultural plots (e.g., to test effects of composting, biochar, & other organic fertilizers, intercropping, integrated pest management, etc.

  • Shade house and tree nursery management practices

  • Native food forest monitoring – a future forest of native species with food, building, and/or medicinal uses

  • Green infrastructure development – solar food dehydrator, bicycle-powered water pump, etc.

 

Read more about possible internship projects in the Peruvian Amazon.

Map of the field site in southeastern Peru.

Tree climbing allows researchers to safely access the top reaches of the rain forest canopy, and is one of many skills that interns will gain in Peru. Photo: Geoff Gallice

Traps allow us to sample butterflies and other rain forest insects that are otherwise hard to find. With more than 1,300 known butterfly species, Peru's Madre de Dios region offers a limitless variety of possibilities for the study of biodiversity. Photo: Geoff Gallice

Program Location: Finca Las Piedras, Madre de Dios, Peru

Accommodations: Shared room/dormitory

Work Schedule: Monday thru Friaday, 8 hrs/day

Meeting Location: Puerto Maldonado, Peru

Requirements

Overview

Program Details

An academic background or strong interest in biology, ecology, agriculture, or conservation is highly recommended for all interns. We do not offer academic credit through our organization, but we are happy to sign documents for credit from your home institution. All instruction at the field site is in English. Although Spanish is not required, basic skills will be very useful.

1. Introduction to Sustainability

Internship - 4 weeks

 

Objectives

This 4-week program offers participants a broad introduction to biological research and conservation in the tropics. Our teaching and learning approach is both academic and hands-on. Interns will participate directly in scientific research and applied conservation projects that span our two focal areas: biological research and monitoring and sustainable tropical agriculture. With the help of our academic faculty, interns will also navigate tropical biology and conservation science through lectures and weekly reading discussions covering articles drawn from the primary scientific literature. All interns maintain a field journal, including daily entries that aim to synthesize their learning experiences and sharpen their observational skills. This is an excellent opportunity to explore an exciting variety of potential career paths in biology and conservation under the guidance of experts in those fields.

Details

Length: 4 weeks

Dates (2017):

Session I: Jun 19 - Jul 14

Session II: Jul 17 - Aug 11

Session III: Aug 14 - Sept 8

Session IV: Sept 11 - Aug 6

Session V: Nov 20 - Dec 15

Application Deadlines:

Session I: May 26

Session II: Jun 30

Session III: Jul 28

Session IV: Aug 25

Session V: Oct 27

Program Fees:

Per week: $325

Total fees: $1,300 (4 weeks)

 

2. Advanced Sustainability

Internship - 8 weeks

Details

Length: 8 weeks

Dates (2017):

Session I: Jun 19 - Aug 11

Session II: Aug 14 - Oct 6

Application Deadlines:

Session I: May 26

Session II: Jul 28

Objectives

This 8-week program offers participants a more in-depth survey of biological research and conservation in the tropics. Interns will learn by participating directly in scientific research and applied conservation projects that span our two focal areas: biological research and monitoring and sustainable tropical agriculture. With the guidance of our academic faculty, interns will also navigate tropical biology and conservation science through lectures and weekly reading discussions covering articles drawn from the primary scientific literature. All interns maintain a field journal, including daily entries that aim to synthesize their learning experiences and sharpen their observational skills.

Independent Research Project

 

As well as the activities listed above, participants in the Advanced Sustainability Internship Program will have the added opportunity to develop an Independent Research Project on a topic of their choosing, under the supervision of our academic faculty. Topics may also be assigned in an area of our faculty’s academic expertise, including wildlife biology and ecology, entomology, botany, natural history, sustainable agriculture, and community development. This optional project will provide participants with a more thorough insight into the process of scientific discovery and conservation in the tropics.

Program Fees:

Per week: $275

Total fees: $2,200 (8 weeks)

 

3. Academic Quarter

Internship - 12 weeks

Details

This 12-week program offers participants the most thorough exploration of biological research and conservation in the tropics. Interns will learn by participating directly in scientific research and applied conservation projects that span our two focal areas: biological research and monitoring and sustainable tropical agriculture. With the guidance of our academic faculty, interns will also explore topics tropical biology and conservation science through lectures and weekly reading discussions covering articles drawn from the primary scientific literature. All interns maintain a field journal, including daily entries that aim to synthesize their learning experiences and sharpen their observational skills.

 

Independent Research Project

As well as the activities listed above, participants in the Academic Quarter Internship Program will have the added opportunity to develop a detailed Independent Research Project on a topic of their choosing, under the supervision of our academic faculty. Topics may also be assigned in an area of our faculty’s academic expertise, including wildlife biology and ecology, entomology, botany, natural history, sustainable agriculture, and community development. This optional project will provide participants with a more thorough insight into the process of scientific discovery and conservation in the tropics. The Academic Quarter Internship Program is ideal for those intending to complete an academic thesis, particularly at the undergraduate level (i.e., capstone).

Objectives

Details

Length: 12 weeks

Dates (2017):

Session I: Jun 19 - Sept 8

Application Deadlines:

Session I: May 26

Program Fees:

Per week: $250

Total fees: $3,000 (12 weeks)

Questions?

Full Program Description

Frequently Asked Questions

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