Butterfly House Caretaker

founded in 2011
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Coordinator | Kathya
Coordinator | Kathya
Book with Flex Option! Choose new departure dates or change to a different volunteer program at no extra costs.
We need people who have an interest in butterflies and other insects, their ecosystem, plants and biological cycle, also research about the topic. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Age 18+

Our volunteer program as a Butterfly House caretaker is very important in the project progress. We require people who mainly have a deep love for nature, no previous studies are required, people who have more experience will  be dedicated to some research and those who do not have much experience will learn a lot about butterfly species and cycle of life, the common quality should be to have a lot of curiosity and be very observant, the time the volunteer spend feeding and taking care of the butterflies, searching more species in the property and taking care of the plants is essential for the project because they can provide valuable information for the project. The butterfly house caretakers are the main and first source of information for monitoring the advances in this fascinating project.

The project

The general problem that exists in this area of ​​the Amazon is the uncontrolled use of natural resources by unscrupulous people, which causes many losses of wildlife. Many people are engaged in hunting butterflies from the environment to dissect them and sell them as handicrafts or as exotic species, increasingly depredating and distancing their presence near civilization. Our project seeks to reproduce the species of butterflies in a controlled environment, taking as little as possible of the environment and returning them after reproduction while doing research on their biological process and plants for their development. In addition the project will serve as a platform for environmental education for children and as an example of sustainable development business for adults, so they will be taught to use the resource for crafts in a responsible manner and without depredating the species.

Volunteer work

The volunteer program for butterfly house caretaker includes the following activities in general:

  • Monitoring the plan to determine the biological cycle of certain species
  • Detect and collect the eggs in the plants to reproduce them in the controlled area
  • Development of the observation of the species and feeding of caterpillars
  • Achieve their reproduction in a controlled environment
  • Document the information obtained to support future research 

The volunteers must be mainly responsible, the work we do is very delicate, since we work with the lives of vulnerable species; it is very important for us that the volunteers has passion for their work and they have to be very observant, and can contribute ideas and improvements in the care process. All ideas and improvements that can be implemented will be taken into account and welcome. What we want is forming a team in which all volunteers from different countries leave a positive mark on the project with ideas and improvements, they will see in the future through the social networks that they contributed to the growth of the project.

What you can expect

Volunteers can be sure that the facilities where they spend their days are comfortable and is a quiet environment, which allows them to work during the day and relax or do research at night. Our team is very united, we are a young organization that has grown little by little during the last 5 years, bringing together people who love what they do and contribute ideas, whose main objective is the welfare of the animals in custody. In this project your ideas will always be welcome.

The staff of RAREC speak English, Spanish and Portuguese. In our team we have two specialists in butterfly house development, plants and species observation, they live in RAREC and they will be in charge of designating the tasks and supporting volunteers in all the activities or doubts they may have. The project directors also live in RAREC and we are attentive to all the needs of the volunteers and we will collect all the information they can give us so that their work and findings will be part of the database and protocols of the project. On the other hand volunteers will work with other biologists who support us in our projects. For manual tasks such as area improvement, volunteers can rely on maintenance personnel.

We give to each volunteer RAREC t-shirts, rain cape, rain boots and a headlamp. It is important that they bring comfortable and fresh clothes, sneakers, sandals, hats and also long-sleeved shirts and pants to avoid bugs at night.

Typical day

A typical day for a volunteer begins at 7 am with breakfast. The principal tasks of the day are:

  • Review / change butterfly fruit
  • Check / change sheets of individual larval deposits.
  • Search predators at the butterfly
  • Locate eggs, larvae and caterpillars within the butterfly
  • Cleaning of gardens, paths and surroundings of the butterfly garden
  • Cleaning of the Education Classroom and Butterfly Rearing Room
  • Prune and plant new host plants in the butterfly garden and strategic areas of the property
  • Review and date changes in eggs, larvae and pupae
  • Photograph the different species of butterflies in any of their stages (eggs, larvae, crisality and adults)

Apart from this, volunteers will participate in team walks, conducted to different areas of virgin forest within the property to detect more species and some nocturnal walks are scheduled with a guide to detect species of nocturnal butterflies.

The schedule is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., when the volunteers wish, they can take days off for tours, they should only tell us to schedule the tasks in advance.

Free-time activities

We have a recreation room with tv, dvd, wifi, games and hammocks to relax. Within RAREC you can hike to the creek at the end of the land, where you can swim, in the whole way you can observe wildlife in freedom. You can also do sport fishing.

Our road connection allows us to reach any tourist place in the Region, for example the Pacaya Samiria reserve is 2 hours from RAREC by road and by river. It is also easy to reach the port to navigate the Amazon River.



In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (basic level)
Required Documents
Health insurance for travel
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
Love for animals
Hard working
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 08:00 - 16:00

What's Included

Services by RAREC

$ 50 USD per day for stays from 1 week to 2 weeks.

$ 45 USD per day for stays from 3 weeks to 4 weeks.

$ 40 USD per day for stays longer than 4 weeks.

Accommodation Includes:

  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner 
  • Volunteer bedrooms made of noble material and wood (4 volunteers per room) with fan
  • Electricity all day in all the facilities
  • Exterior kitchen, with wifi 
  • Exterior dining room, with wifi 
  • Exterior recreational room, with wifi, tv, dvd, games, telescope and a mini-gym
  • Shared bathrooms with running water
  • Laundry machine for free use
  • Equipment (Phone chip to have internet, RAREC t-shirts, a rain cape, rain boots and a headlamp)

Airport Pickup at C.F. Secada Vignetta International Airport

RAREC staff will pick up the volunteer from the airport. The meeting point is at the flight arrival room, in the previous days we will coordinate the pick up. The journey to the center is 1 hour by road.

It is only important that you confirm in advance the arrival flight information. It is preferable that you schedule the flight in the morning or in the afternoon.


The volunteers are going to live in RAREC facilities. About our location, RAREC is one hour from the city by car, at Km. 47. The city of Iquitos is the largest population center in the area; RAREC is in a jungle area, connected to Iquitos by the only road that is here. We hire a point of electricity, so we have electricity all day in all the facilities, and we receive mobile internet, through the cell phone, each volunteer receive a phone chip to put on their cell phones and through this chip they can receive internet signal throughout their stay.

Regarding the property, we have built approximately one fifth of the land, leaving the trees as they were and building in certain spaces the animal areas, the houses where we live and the structures made with wood and noble material where we have the kitchen, the dining room, and the recreation area, these are exterior structures where you can be very comfortable. All the rest of the land is still untouched jungle; there we hike to the creek that is at the end of the land.

Accommodation also includes laundry service once a week. Each volunteer is assigned a room where there may be other volunteers as well, in total 4 volunteers sleep in each room. The rooms are made of noble material and wood, there are bunk beds, with fan. They are very fresh and have anti-bugs nets on windows and on the beds.

We have comfortable structures to stay and at the same time we are completely surrounded by the sounds of the jungle and trees, so we
guarantee the jungle experience. In addition, the days you decide to take free, you can go anywhere; the road connects us to all the
tourist places of Iquitos. Including the Pacaya Samiria Reserve, this is 2 hours by road and river. 

Dorm Room
Food & Beverages

The fee includes:

  • American breakfast
  • Typical Peruvian lunch (if the volunteer requests a lighter type of food, it can be done without any problem): main course, dessert and drink
  • Dinner: sandwiches, soups, pasta, etc.
  • Volunteers must confirm if they have any special diet such as vegan, vegetarian or have an allergy to any food, to take it into account in the preparation of their food.
  • Drinks and fruits available at any time.
  • The breakfasts are self-service with all the necessary of an American breakfast, with options suitable for vegetarians and vegans. The lunch is determined by a menu, also with options for vegetarians and vegans. Dinners consist of one menu option or the self-service option with certain ingredients that the volunteer can cook or choose.

Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is C.F. Secada Vignetta International Airport (IQT) in Iquitos. We assist you to find cheap flights to Peru.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Peru provides security and is a plus to have.
If you are intending to volunteer in Peru you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Peru.

Dates & Fees


Details on arrival

The volunteers can join the program throughout the year.

They are welcome in any month of the year. The rainy months are from December to April, the rest of the year is very hot.

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
1 - 24 weeks

Program fees

Costs: Prices in USD
1 week (min. stay)
2 weeks
3 weeks
4 weeks
8 weeks
24 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees
$315 /week

Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated. RAREC will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with RAREC during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.

Why book with Volunteer World

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Butterfly House Caretaker

We need people who have an interest in butterflies and other insects, their ecosystem, plants and biological cycle, also research about the topic.


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