WORK WITH PIONEERS
Be on the sharp edge of wildlife conservation. Ring endangered birds in the heart of Polish Baltic Wilderness.
- From Volunteer Testimonials
Bird migrations are one of the most spectacular phenomenons of Nature. Since beginnings, humans have been fascinated by the ability to fly, navigation skills and endurance of these wonderful Sky Wanderers.
Some of us went a step further, trying to understand mechanisms behind bird passages. In early 1960s, a small group of such dedicated enthusiasts set up mist nets on the Baltic shore for the first time. One of the oldest bird ringing schemes in the world has just begun.
Every year, in Spring and Autumn, Operation Baltic workers conduct scientific research on birds migrating through Polish coast. Birds are ringed and weighed. We also assess their health and orientation.
Million 200 thousand birds of 208 species have been ringed so far. Why such huge numbers? Because of the unique, transit location of Polish Baltic Coast. For birds, it is a meeting point of their migration routes.
Operation Baltic cooperates with the Polish Academy of Sciences and top Polish and foreign universities. It is renowned for long-lasting tradition, making it one of the oldest bird ringing schemes worldwide. Research has been going on for more than a half a century!
Operation Baltic and Wild Areas Network want you to become a vital part of the project. You have a unique opportunity to contribute to this world-class research and become our Volunteer.
Download our detailed Infosheet and read it carefully. Here are key questions you may have:
- What will I do?
- You will handle the birds, taking them out from nets. Our main duty will be to regularly check mist nets located near the camp. We will bring caught birds in small bags to the camp where they will be ringed and assessed.
In the campsite we will record all observations made by the ringer in special notebooks. Sometimes we will perform orientation experiments. And we will release the birds back to the wild.
- Where will I stay?
- In a truly welcoming, unique place. We organize our camps in three different ringing stations:
CAMP 1: Kuznica near Hel. Biggest species variability with many owls and nightjars. Located in a landscape park near a fomer military area. Closest to Civilisation, with unique cultural heritage.
CAMP 2: Bukowo near Koszalin. The wildest and most remote area that requires different assembly point location and programme, especially regarding free time activities that you can see in detail in the Infosheet.
CAMPS 3 and 4: Siekierki near Krynica Morska. Biggest habitat variability, including quite adventurous swampy sections so deep that you need to use waders or even rubber overalls. Forest part is a haven for Woodpeckers.
As you see, each Ringing Station offers unique Opportunities - take your time to choose your favourite.
The Staff and Volunteers sleep in tents that are provided on the site. The camp life goes on in bigger, industrial-like tents, heated with a wood burner if necessary. There are separate tents for bird ringing and cooking. We cook on a gas stove.
With good organization of work we can have plenty of free time. The amount of free time varies and depends on decisions of the ringer. For example, if there are lots of birds in the nets, every pair of hands will be needed. But if there are only a few birds, the amount of free time increases. And then...
We can organize a whole day off, focusing only on creative and affordable ways to Discover the area. In the night we can hunt for Ambers with a UV torch. We can explore WWII shipwrecks at the shore. Or learn about protection of Polish marine life at a local seal sanctuary. Or even polish found Amber pieces in a genuine amber processing workshop in Gdansk, as featured in Sir David Attenborough’s series BBC Natural World.
See the downloadable Exploration Topics Infosheet on our website for more ideas!
- What's in it for me?
- Boost your CV with our Certificate of Participation!
We offer HANDS-ON intensive exchange of specialist ornithological experience and knowledge and HANDS-ON field experience in wildlife monitoring abroad, especially important for Bird Ringers, Students, Wildlife Volunteers and Professionals. We will provide training in high-standard techniques of species ID, bird handling, age and sex determination, measurements and data registration.
We offer deep contact with unspoiled Wildlife, 24 hours a day! You can watch stunning, tranquil Baltic sunrises and sunsets and reconnect with rhythms of Nature. You will have an opportunity to make lifelong friends with inspiring, like-minded people. You will experience invaluable and refreshing international, intercultural exchange. You will gain unforgettable memories.
- What are the costs?
- You will spend £245 on everything necessary. The price includes direct and comfortable transfers from Gdansk to the site and back, all food expenses and a place in the tent. It also covers our high-quality field training confirmed by the Certificate of Participation.
You can also learn about our unique money management standards, how we use your funds to support the project, analyze the cost breakdown and find out about our Social Enterprise status on Your Money page here.
AVAILABLE DATES - SPRING & AUTUMN 2020:
22 - 28.04.2020
05 - 11.09.2020
15 - 21.09.2020
24 - 30.09.2020
TO APPLY: Simply fill in the Application Form and send to us via the contact form below. Thank you!
If it is easier for you, send us your documents to our email address You can send your CV too - we are proud of our Volunteers and would love to know more about you!
EVERY APPLICANT, regardless of the application outcome, receives free downloadable educational materials, scientific papers and/or manuals useful during the Project to read while we analyze your Application - it's a gift for You :)
Please note that we review each Application individually and in a fully personalized way, that requires more time as well as constant attention to ensure your Recruitment Experience meets highest standards possible. Therefore when submitting your materials you will be asked to contribute 10 Pounds fee that supports our recruitment processes as well as Information Campaigns thanks to which you know that initiatives like Operation Baltic exist. Thank you!