The Great Turtle Project
Who: The Great Projects
Where: Kosgoda, Sri Lanka
Focus: Monitoring turtle nests and working at the hatchery.
When: All year round (August – November not recommended) | Project starts every Sunday
Peak Season: February to April
Duration: 1-12 weeks
Suitability: Min. age 7
Cost: 1 week from GBP 599 | Extra weeks from GBP 110
As a volunteer, you will:
- Monitor local sea turtle activity and conserve the local nesting-sites. Since 1988, the Great Turtle Project has released over 94,000 hatchlings into the sea – Hawksbill, Green, Loggerhead and Olive Ridley.
- Take part in the day-to-day running of the hatchery centre and daily care of resident turtles, including cleaning the turtles’ shells.
- Maintain and clean the project area and beach to make sure the nesting sites remain as healthy and safe as possible to give the turtles the best chance of survival.
- Clean and construct the hatcheries, ensuring the tanks and hatchery are clean.
- Feed the turtles by cutting up and preparing their food (predominantly tuna).
- Release turtles into the sea, ensuring predators such as birds are scared away.
- Bury the eggs brought by vendors to safeguard them for hatching.
- Teach English to local communities.
- Lend a hand with tourists touring the hatchery.
- Be lucky and spot a blue whale.
When to go
All year round: Turtles are rehabilitating at the sanctuary, either due to being injured/rescued, or as part of the head starter programme or for teaching purposes.
Late November to April: Nesting season with eggs taking 7 weeks to hatch.
January to early June: Hatching season.
February to April: Peak hatching season – the most popular time to visit the project.
August to November: Not Recommended.
Accommodation: Volunteer house on the project site.
Sleeping: Basic twin or triple rooms, includes modern toilets, showers and running water,
Food: All meals provided.
Working Week: 5 days a week.
Number of volunteers: 10 max.
Support: 24-hour in-country volunteer support.
Transport: Pick up is from Colombo International airport and transfer to the project site (roughly 3 hours’ drive away).
The next step: Visit The Great Projects for more information and to book.
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