Dolphin Conservation & Research Dolphin Conservation & Research Zambratija, Funtana, Croatia VIVAMAR
Vivamar is an ambassador between dolphins and humans. We research and inspire conservation of the last resident bottlenose dolphins with helping volunteers.

16 Project reviews of VIVAMAR

Project Details

As a volunteer with Vivamar you’ll help in conservation and research of the last resident bottlenose dolphins in the off Istria, NE Adriatic Sea.

Last Bottlenose Dolphin Conservation in Istria, Croatia, NE Adriatic

VIVAMAR is the NGO, established in 2002, is the research team dedicated to the conservation of the Bottlenose Dolphins off Istria, Croatia. This dolphin volunteer program in North-eastern Adriatic focuses on the relationships, group size, composition and population dynamics, as well as obtaining scientific data about the fishing industry and negative influence from nautical tourism on the dolphin community. To volunteer for the last marine mammals in the area one of the aims is to ensure that sustainable and environmentally safe tourism is accomplished by offering certified training programs for dolphin watching. 

The main focus of the project is on
NPO Status
Yes, registered non-profit organization
Foundation Year
Contact Person
Darja Ribaric
Spoken Languages

Social Impact

Why volunteer in protecting the dolphins off Istria, in Croatia?

Vivamar volunteer experience help in a broader social context. The whole Istria lives in majority from the tourism. There is actually no industry. Therefore it's very important to keep the natural resources clean and especially the sea where the tourists come in the summer. Dolphins are bio-indicators of the ecological state of the sea. In the conditions like too little food (fish) or too much nautical disturbance (sound and direct driving into the dolphins), dolphins would displace from this region. This would have a big negative impact on the balance for the health of the entire NE Adriatic. 

Therefore we in Vivamar follow the population dynamics of the dolphins through our research and can, after analysis, indirectly report about any unfavourable conditions mentioned above. The stakeholders would be informed and mitigation actions would need to be implemented.

The social context of the existence of the dolphin population is therefore bigger. One of the goals is to rise the awareness between people where volunteers can take a great part.

There is a "Dolphin Day" that we prepare for children and it's educative program about dolphin biology their role in the marine ecosystem. 

We try to educate the stakeholders of the Dolphin Watching Industry to have a sustainable approach towards the animals when delivering this awesome experience to the tourists. So with the help of  volunteers we execute in the months of high tourism also awareness directly to the tourists. This helps that they will be more respectful to the dolphins and will perceive the sea more respectfully not only as a pleasure for their holidays but also as a home to many animals and plants. Especially so because this part of the Adriatic, being so shallow, is especially ecologically sensitive. 

Furthermore we try to find connections between fishermen.  Through our research we do notice the dolphin-fishery interaction, so we try to mitigate the involved stakeholders with rising the awareness. Also here the volunteers play an important role in collaborating directly on the project, actions and research.

The mission of Vivamar is, by all written above, to try to save the functionality of the North East Adriatic Sea. We had great enthusiastic volunteers present in the past and we wish to have more dolphin volunteers who will help in education of the local people in Istria and will try to inspire them why conservation of these last residential bottlenose dolphins is important. 

Join us in this mission and get one of the best volunteer experiences for the bottlenose dolphins – dolphins in the need of conservation. 

Pursued Sustainable Development Goals

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