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Paid Field Research Internship (For Maldivian Nationals Only)

Reference   (Please mention Stopdodo/Environment Jobs in your application)
Sectors Terrestrial / Aquatic Ecology & Conservation
Location Maldives - Asia & M East
Salary (Minimum)
Salary (Maximum)
Type Temporary / Contract / Seasonal
Status Full Time
Level Voluntary & Interns
Deadline 16/02/2024
Company Name The Manta Trust
Contact Name
Website Further Details / Applications
The Manta Trust logo
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Interested in getting yourself fully immersed in the manta madness that the Maldives has to offer?  Well the opportunity has now arrived - The Manta Trust is excited to announce that applications for a paid field research internship with the Maldives Manta Conservation Programme in 2024 are now open! For three months, you will be involved in collecting vital data on the world’s largest-known population of reef manta rays, working and learning from researchers running one of the best-known manta research projects. The position will give you first-hand experience of working as a manta scientist; operating from our dedicated research vessel, interns will cruise the atoll in search of mantas, and potential new aggregation sites. All data collected will contribute to the database we have built up for over a decade and will be used to inform both local communities and government officials to ensure protective measures are met for the successful conservation of manta rays and other megafauna. 


  • Applicants must be able to commit to one of two 3-month periods (1st June – 31st August, or 1st September - 30th November). Applicants that are flexible and able to commit to either period will be preferred.

  • Applicants must have experience and interest working in a Marine Biology/ Environmental Conservation field;

  • Minimum PADI Dive Master certification in active status (SSI/BSAC equivalent). Please give details of diving experience and number of dives logged. Whilst diving is not a common activity for an intern, applicants without this diving qualification will NOT be considered.

  • Excellent swimming/snorkelling skills. A demonstrated ability to comfortably free-dive to at least 10-15m. You will spend a lot of time snorkelling down beneath manta rays to get photos of their ID spot patterns.

  • Physically fit – it is likely you will spend 4+ hours a day, 6 days a week swimming in the ocean. Mantas love to be uncooperative, and when conditions are rough/there is a current, it can be physically demanding.

  • A strong interest in manta rays, conservation and marine/environmental research.

  • Computer literate and comfortable working long hours at a desk. After a long day at sea, interns will be expected to spend 3 hours+ in the afternoon/evenings processing ID photo data in the office with the other researchers.

  • Fluent in spoken and written English (additional languages desirable).

  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills - comfortable with public speaking and giving presentations.

  • Self-motivated individual with a positive, ‘can-do’ attitude with a flexible approach to a diverse workload;

  • The ability to live and work as part of a team in a remote local island environment;

Roles and responsibilities include:

  • Carry out daily research snorkels and site surveys;

  • Collect data on all manta sightings (ID photos, gender, injuries, pregnancies, behaviour, etc.);

  • Data entry – survey results; sightings updates; research study analysis;

  • Promote safe and responsible tourism interactions with manta rays;

  • Assist with the delivery of community awareness sessions;

  • Produce material for Manta Trust social media;

Equipment Requirements:

  • Dropbox Plus Subscription (minimum 1TB storage space).

  • Fins, Mask and Snorkel.

Inclusions & Exclusions:

  • All food, shared accommodation and internal flight transfers will be covered.

  • For those not certified with any Freediving qualification, a theory training course will be provided free of charge.

  • Interns will be entitled to a monthly salary of $300.   

  • Scientific training and experience conducting research in the field.

  • Interns will be required to take out their own insurance cover, including but not limited to, travel and personal liability insurance.

If you are interested, and meet all requirements please send your CV/resume (maximum two pages), and a covering letter (maximum one page) to baa@mantatrust.org, quoting the reference above and your name in the email title e.g. ‘Internship Application #MMRP2024 Joe Bloggs’. 

This is an extremely popular and highly competitive opportunity, so really try and impress us if you want to stand out! It should also be highlighted that completion of this internship may present the opportunity to work with the Manta Trust in the future. We look forward to reading your application.

Please note this internship is reserved for Maldivian nationals.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and interviews may be conducted with short-listed candidates before the application deadline. 

Due to limited capacity only successful candidates will be contacted.

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