Wildlife Conservation and Research Internship

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Coordinator | Daisy
Coordinator | Daisy
Book with Flex Option! Choose new departure dates or change to a different volunteer program at no extra costs.


Experience life on a Caribbean island - embrance the culture, try the local food, and be amazed by the contrast of white sand beaches and neighbouring inland tropical broad leaf forest
Gain experience working with endemic and endangered animals - working with some of the only researchers in the world currently studying these animals!
No experience necessary - you will get a taste of each study and aid in data collection of different types, broadening your field research experience.
Work 'hands-on' with a wide range of animals - including bats, birds, iguanas, snakes, insects, and arachnids!
Learn from a passionate team of individuals who have been living on Utila for years, dedicating their scientific career to provide a better understanding of the flora and fauna that inhabit the island
Participants assist on ALL projects - you will get a taste of each study and aid in data collection of different types, broadening your field research experience. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Age 18+

Kanahau Utila Research and Conservation Facility (KURCF) is a newly established research facility on the north side of the island of Utila, Honduras. We primarily study all aspects of the terrestrial biodiversity,  welcoming volunteers and researchers from all disciplines and fields to join us. In addition to terrestrial research, Kanahau recently established a collaborative 'Utila Coral Restoration' project and a non-profit community shop 'Utila Handmade Co-operative'.

The research facility is located about two miles outside the only town. It is surrounded by tropical broad leaf forest, just a few hundred feet from the Caribbean sea and situated at the bottom of 'Pumpkin Hill' which affords unparalleled views of this small island. Presently, we are a small, dedicated team of passionate conservation biologists.  We offer full board accommodation, including three meals a day, and can accommodate individuals and small groups who wish to gain experience or conduct independent/supervised research.

We run several long term studies at the facility and host visiting research scientists with their own studies. Some of the large projects we currently manage include monitoring populations of widespread (Snakes and Lizards) and threatened reptiles, including the critically endangered iguana Ctenosaura bakeri (endemic to Utila) two Anole lizards, Norops utilensis and Norops bicaroum (endemic to Utila) and two Geckos, Sphearodactylus poindexterii and Phyllodactylus palmeus (endemic). We also run a long-term study cataloging the Bats of the Bay Islands, as well as insects and arachnids, mammals and birds. In addition to scientific research,  we are actively involved in Environmental Education and various community outeach projects on the island.  At Kanahau we recognise that alongside research and active species management, the key to successful species conservation is education and inspiring appreciation of nature in the local community. 

Typical day

Days on Kanahau are long and exciting. We start our days at 7 am, we take turns during the week to walk and feed our dogs morning and afternoons. The day is followed by lectures on wildlife and biology field methods and then we applied what was learned on the field. We take turns cooking lunch and dinner, and keeping the facility clean. We follow a monthly schedule so the daily activities will depend on how long you stay. We recommend 3 weeks but you can stay as long as you want. In the first week of the month you’ll be introduce to the Utilian culture by taking an exciting tour around the island with us, you’ll be introduced to the island’s wildlife and start going to the field to learn about iguanas. On the second week we will take you “herping” (looking for snakes, lizards and frogs), to the bat cave, to place mist nets and to do fish and benthic surveys. You will also be asked to developed your own personal mini project whilel your time in our research station. In the third week, we do invertebrate sampling techniques and community outreach activities.

Free-time activities

Utila is a gorgeous place, with beautiful landscapes, coral reefs and sandy beaches. All Sundays on Kanahau are days off unless we have a community outreach activity programed or a university group coming. In that case, other day of the week will be selected for leisure. This is a perfect opportunity to try the local cuisine on a typical restaurant, read a book on the beach or explore the reef through fun dives or snorkeling trips. Day off activities are not covered by Kanahau but we can help you out with recommendations on what to do and places to visit. 



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) or Spanish (basic level)
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday

What's Included

Services by KANAHAU

 It includes accomodation, 3 vegetarian meals per day, coffee, tea, ferry or airport pickup, field training and materials. 

Airport Pickup at Utila

Pick up from Utila airport or Útila ferry dock


Single sex dorms of 4-5 individuals. The rooms are located in the bottom floor, with ceiling fans. We do not have a/c available. 

Dorm Room
Food & Beverages

We provide 3 vegetarian meals a day, water, coffee and tea. Other dietary requirements, such as allergies, can be well catered for. 

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 Utila (UII) in Utila. We assist you to find cheap flights to Honduras.
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 Honduras provides security and is a plus to have.
If you are intending to volunteer in Honduras you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Honduras.

Dates & Fees


Details on arrival

Our arrival dates are March 9th, April 6th, May 4th, June 1st, July 6th, August 3rd, September 7th and October 5th.

This program is paused due to COVID-19

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
1 - 12 weeks

Program fees

Costs: Prices in USD
1 week (min. stay)
4 weeks
12 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees
$478 /week

Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated. KANAHAU 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 KANAHAU 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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Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if KANAHAU cancels your trip
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We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by KANAHAU.

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Wildlife Conservation and Research Internship

Participants assist on ALL projects - you will get a taste of each study and aid in data collection of different types, broadening your field research experience.



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