Wildlife Volunteering in Africa & Asia: Animal Conservation Abroad Programs

Discover some of the best wildlife volunteering and animal conservation programs in South Africa, Costa Rica, India, Kenya and Thailand! We focus on delivering a unique experience, at a highly affordable price!

Whether you choose to save the baby sea turtles on the Caribbean beaches of Costa Rica, volunteer with elephants in Thailand, monitor the Big Five in the African Bush or go for a marine biology internship in Cape Town, your experience will be unique!

Are you passionate about animals? Join one of our Wildlife Volunteering Programs

If you are passionate about animals, join one of our animal conservation programs and get directly in touch with fascinating animals, as the Vervet Monkeys, the Big Five or Elephants! The unique volunteer experience will give you a deeper understanding of nature, while you are helping animals in the wildlife. Your volunteer work with these majestic animals is so important because some of them have been abandoned, injured or the whole species is threatened to be extinct.

Benefits from Animal Conservation Volunteering

While you are working to protect endangered Species or care for animals in the bush, nature will greatly benefit from your efforts. However, you will also get a deeper understanding of the inner workings of nature. The closer you get in touch with the animals, you will even start understanding their individual character.

How to be a Wildlife Volunteer

Cheetah - Wildlife Volunteering in South Africa
Cheetah – Wildlife Volunteering in South Africa

A few ways you can get involved in wildlife volunteering include tracking and monitoring animals, feeding animals. Moreover, as an animal conservation volunteer you can help coordinating visitors in reserves, accompanying guides on night patrols, assisting with hatchery duties, and much more. Depending on the animal conservation program you sign up for, you may need to have background experience in your project area.

Wildlife volunteers will have the opportunity to live in sanctuaries where they will help around in daily activities and field activities, as well as study and monitor native and endangered animals. As an animal conservation volunteer you will soon find out that that working alongside wild animals isn’t going to be like babysitting. But on the other hand, you will enjoy to  get up close to the wilderness in their most natural states. Finally, you get to immerse yourself into real animal conservation efforts.

Choose from the slide above the animal conservation program you like best, and find all the information of how to apply!

Costa Rica: Save the Baby Sea Turtles on the Caribbean Beach

You can work as an animal conservation volunteer in Costa Rica to save sea turtles in this paradisiac community on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica. This wildlife volunteer project is a wonderful opportunity to help protect the endangered baby sea turtles. You will see giant female sea turtles nesting on the beach and baby turtles crawling out of their nests in the sand towards the ocean. For you as an animal conservation volunteer, this is an exciting opportunity to help a town that relies on its sea turtle population and to contribute to the growth and success of this grassroots conservation project.

Bird Page had a fantastic time with the sea turtles in Costa Rica

Paige Bird with a baby sea turtle
Paige Bird with a baby sea turtle

I had a fantastic time in Costa Rica with the turtles and I met many people and created memories I will never forget. I definitely recommend Iko Poran and the Sea Turtle experience in Costa Rica and I cannot wait until I volunteer with them again. Pura Vida!
– Paige, 19 years old

I had an amazing time volunteering on Costa Rica’s beautiful coast. Where at night we went on patrols to search for nests/turtles, scare off poachers (who aren’t always bad) and simply survey the beach. During the day we went on hikes to see the islands natural life and meet new people, cleaned up the beach, cleaned and prepared the hatchery and much more. I’d definitely recommend this conservation project for your next volunteer opportunity. The people were so welcoming and treated us as if we had lived there our whole lives. Everyone had a cool story and a nickname to go with it. Like mechudo and his baby blue jean poisonous dart frog…  – Nikita Barnard

Save the baby sea turtles in Costa Rica

South Africa: From Wildlife Volunteering in the African Bush to Marine Biology

In South Africa, you’ll find a wide range from animal conservation programs, from Big Five Monitoring, protecting endangered species, to marine biology at the aquarium in Cape Town.

 

Wildlife Volunteering in South Africa: The Three most Wonderful Months in my Life!

Imane Animal Volunteering in South Africa: Genet
Imane Animal Volunteering in South Africa: Genet

I participated in a project in South Africa, during 3 months. These are the most wonderful 3 months I have ever spent in my life. The place was magical, animals of all kinds and an extraordinary team atmosphere .. I met volunteers from around the world, really this experience taught me a lot on a personal level! I highly recommend – Imane, France

Volunteer with the Big Cats in South Africa

Work for a non-profit organization in South Africa in order to protect the endangered wild cats in the African Bush. Like you, the local specializing team feels passion and love for these exploited animals. Since the population of big cats in South Africa is being threatened by bone traders, canned hunting, and poachers who hunt them for sport, your work as an animal conservation volunteer is very important! They have also traditionally fallen victim to exploitation in captivity and face a constant and rapid loss of habitat as the land gets developed.

Find out more about volunteering with big cats in South Africa.

Save the Vervet Monkeys in South Africa

Gijs van Suijlichem - Volunteer in South Africa
Gijs van Suijlichem

Join the family at this amazing primate sanctuary as an animal conservation volunteer! At this special initiative, orphaned primates come from near and far and are given a loving home where they are rehabilitated and cared for until they can be released back into the wild.

With over 500 cheeky monkeys in care at any one time, this sanctuary always needs an extra pair of helping hands. Your participation as an animal conservation volunteer will help to ensure they are all well fed, cared for and loved. As an wildlife volunteer you can help as well to raise funds in order to maintain the place up to scratch for its gorgeous guests. This is an incredible option for those who go bananas for animals as you will get the chance to work hands on with the monkeys under the guidance of experienced professionals. As an animal conservation volunteer you also will help to carry out all the back-stage tasks which really ensure the monkeys’ wellbeing.

At the same time you will get to experience the amazing wildlife in the African bush. Make friends you will remember forever – some furry and some a little less so.

Wonderful Time as an Animal Conservaiton Volunteer with the Vervet Monkeys

“I’m having a wonderful time here and there is nothing that I don’t like.”
Gijs van Suijlichem

Find out more about saving the vervet monkeys in South Africa

Thailand: Wildlife Volunteering with Elephants in Surinn

While you are working as a vonteer to care for the elephants in Surin, you also will experience the beautiful country and its culture.

During your stay you’ll join the centuries old tradition of training ‘domestic’ elephants by mahouts in Thailand as an animal conservation volunteer.

This animal conservation volunteer program aims to offer a responsible and sustainable alternative to the fate often faced by elephants in Thailand. Because of the dissolution of the logging industry, many elephants are taken to urban areas to beg for money and are often mistreated. Therefore, our elephant volunteer program continues to lead the way in Surin in helping to change attitudes towards elephant care for the better.

Volunteer on Elephant Care and Support the Local Community

Since all the activities are about caring for the elephants and treating them with respect, we put our strict no riding policy. Therefore, your work schedule as an animal conservation volunteer will include walking them to the river to bathe them, harvesting and planting food, feeding the elephants, everything is based around a new approach to elephant care that puts the elephant in the first place.

A New Approach on Elephant Care

This animal conservation program will bring you in touch with the elephants. Since you will get close and in personal contact with these magnificent elephants on a daily basis, you will have an unforgettable beautiful experience. During your work with the elephants, you also will see the real Thailand, the daily life of its residents. Living in a traditional long house with other volunteers, that’s rural Thai life at it’s very best!

Find out more about volunteer work with elephants in Thailand

 

Wildlife Volunteer Opportunities & Animal Conservation Projects Abroad

As an animal conservation volunteer, you’ll work in a team to get a variety of tasks done within the projects. These activities vary depending on the weather and time of year. Tasks may include, but not limited to:

  • Tracking and monitoring animals
  • Breeding
  • Animals counts
  • Feeding
  • Coordinating visitors in reserves
  • Tracking collared animals
  • Accompanying guides on night patrols
  • Clearing paths
  • Hatchery duties
  • Beach cleaning
  • And others according to the season and weather

Skills required for Wildlife Volunteering & Animal Conservation Programs

Some animal conservation projects require specific skills. Please check the description of your chosen wildlife volunteer program to check the skills required.

For all wildlife volunteer projects:

  • Animal conservation volunteers must love animals and help to take care of them;
  • Realise the enormous responsibility of working with wild animals;
  • You will have to be open to learn new skills
  • Be prepared to get stuck in and get your hands dirty

 

Read about more Wildlife Volunteer Experiences

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