SOUTH AFRICA: Thrilling Great White Shark Project in Stunning Cape Town!

Company : Travellers Worldwide
Activities: Marine Conservation Volunteer / Animal Volunteer Projects / Shark Diving / Conservation Volunteer Projects / Wildlife Tours
Country: South Africa
Location : Near Cape Town
Duration: 3 weeks to 6 months
Approx Costs: 1750 to 3000+ £ Pound (UK)

An opportunity to view the Great White Shark in its natural environment. You'll learn about the Great White and then you'll put that knowledge to use by assisting in conservation and research.

Roaming the worlds oceans, the Great White Shark is undoubtedly the greatest predatory force of the seas. Cloaked in myth, misunderstanding and fear, this awesome animal remains a mystery to man. This Project is exciting, adventurous, fascinating! You'll work with a world leading organisation that focuses on the Great White Shark. 

You'll also see other wildlife species, including Cape Gannets, Bryde Whales, Cape Fur Seals, Dolphins and Jackass Penguins. You'll learn a lot about the Great White and then you'll put that knowledge to use by assisting in conservation and research into this awesome animal.

 

YOUR TRAINING AND WORK:

When you arrive, you'll be given a lot of training before starting your actual work. This training will consist of most of the elements of a two-week course which the organisation offers the general public. However, whereas the general public go home after completing their course, you will be working with the Project to assist in their research and fight against the encroaching possible extinction of the Great White.

You'll receive training in White Shark biology, research, behaviour, conservation, changing attitudes, shark attacks and basic seamanship, and possibly underwater filming, still photography and shark tourism. Weather permitting you will go to sea frequently. At sea, you'll get involved as much as possible with all aspects of sea work. This will be focused on working with the sharks from above and below the water.

Much emphasis will be placed on observing behaviour and the interactions of sharks around the boat. You will be taught how to get in and out of the cage and how to remain secure and safe in the cage. Participants in the cages will record observations of the White Sharks. This will include sex, size, markings and behaviour. You'll also be taught the basics of how to set the camera up, how to use it under water and how to obtain the best images.

This training is designed to educate you to a level of competence of a field assistant. During the training, you will be evaluated on how you handle teamwork, take your own initiatives, take interest in the work and activities, show interest in learning. Thereafter, you'll participate in assisting with various duties and responsibilities, including helping to educate locals and children on the Great White. Your work with them will help to achieve their objectives of gathering sufficient accurate data on the white sharks to assist in management programmes for the ensured survival of the species, as well as striving to change negative public attitude towards sharks through awareness and education, because it is almost impossible to ensure the survival of a hated species!

 

LOCATION:

The program will run out of Gaansbaai, South Africa. The White Shark fieldwork will take place around Dyer Island and possibly other shark locations. Dyer Island (Shark Alley!) is possibly the best place in the world to see Great Whites. Gaansbaai is a seaside village, which depends on fishing and tourism for its survival. It is situated approximately two hours south east of Cape Town.

The shark team document much shark activity using aerial surveys of the island. On one of the main research sites, Dyer Island, many other wildlife species can be viewed from the boat. It is the breeding ground for Jackass Penguins, Cape Cormorants and Gannets, whilst Geyser Rock opposite, is a breeding mecca for Cape Fur Seals and currently home to approximately 20 000 seals. In season Whales and an occasional Dolphin can be spotted. This is a perfect habitat for the Great White.

 

WHAT YOU'LL GAIN FROM DOING THIS PROJECT:

  • An exciting, never-to-be-forgotten adventure into Marine Life in South Africa.
  • You'll learn a lot from experts in your field about how they work in a cultural environment that's different to what you're used to.
  • New skills, more confidence, a greater understanding of a different culture, invaluable personal and professional development.
  • An entry on your CV or résumé that will demonstrate your initiative and ability to work in unfamiliar surroundings, characteristics that may put you head and shoulders above most others in the job market
  • And best of all ... an unforgettable experience!

 

ACCOMMODATION:

You'll stay in a delightful red brick house. It is very comfortable and overlooks the Indian Ocean – this is no exaggeration, this is lovely accommodation. The house has twin sharing rooms, five bathrooms, a nice kitchen, a dining area and an outside patio for those hot evenings. Upstairs offers more excellent views over the mountains and ocean all around. With a very nice seating area, television, video and board games for entertainment, you will be very relaxed in your new home. There is a small supermarket nearby and it is situated five minutes from the harbour. I think the biggest problem you'll have is coming home!!

 

ADDITIONAL ACTIVITIES YOU CAN DO WHILE ON THIS PROJECT:

  • A 5- or 7-day Safari from Cape Town up the renowned Garden Route, taking in Dolphin and Whale Spotting, visits to many tourist attractions, such as a visit to a brewery(!), the Bloukrantz Bungy Jump (reportedly the highest in the world), and a guided tour of the Cango Caves
  • Surfing Courses: In the buzz city of Durban.
  • Paragliding Course: Soar over the impressively beautiful Drakensburg Mountain. You'll get a licence at the end of the course which qualifies you to do solo paragliding around the world.

Start Dates

Flexible start and finish dates you choose. Our placements are flexible and can be tailored to match your preferences. For availability please contact the office.

Costs / Benefits

Costs vary depending on length of placement, but starts at £1,795 for three weeks. You can participate for up to 6 months or longer, subject to visa requirements.
Included is full support from the moment of booking and throughout your placement to your return home. There are support staff 24/7 in all our destinations worldwide and a 24 hour emergency international telephone line direct to the Head Office. Accommodation is provided (whether a rented house, a hotel/hostel, homestay, apartment or flat).
You’ll be met at the nearest airport on your arrival by our in-country manager who will take you to your accommodation and give you a full induction into the area. He/she will also be on call 24/7 and you’ll see them frequently.
Pre-departure you’ll receive comprehensive information about every aspect of your placement and necessary preparations, ranging from what to pack, to visa information, to what to do on your weekend travel in the country. Your safety, well being and happiness throughout your placement are our primary concerns and we will keep in touch with you throughout. International flights not included.

Requirements

No qualifications or previous experience are necessary, just a good dose of enthusiasm! Everyone is welcome on a Travellers programme, whether gap year, undergraduate, on a career break - or even retired! From 17 years old upwards, and all nationalities. This placement would suit anyone who wants to make a real difference, wants first-hand experience of a different culture and has initiative.

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