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Lemur Conservation, Madagascar

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Lemur Conservation, Madagascar how would you like us to contact you?
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quick facts

minimum stay2 Weeks

destinationMadagascar

impacts

Environmental

Wildlife Research & Conservation

Help preserve part of the last remaining absolute coastal forest in the south east of Madagascar through conservation work and environmental education efforts as you find yourself surrounded by the natural beauty of a unique tropical paradise teeming with wildlife you won’t see anywhere else on earth.

Conservation3 pin it!

Saint Luce in Madagascar is surrounded by extremely rare fragments of coastal rainforest, which represent only 10% of the original forest cover, as a result of massive deforestation. The fragments are home to multiple endangered species of flora and fauna. An amazing 96% of all tree species here are endemic.

As such, the fragments are one of Madagascar’s most threatened habitats and a huge conservation priority. The volunteer project seeks to alleviate the problem of deforestation, and aims to protect these forest fragments in a sustainable manner. It combines practical, hands-on conservation research on the endangered fauna and flora, with community initiatives and environmental education.

As a conservation volunteer in Africa you will work alongside international and Malagasy specialists as well as the local community. The Lemur & Biodiversity Research module of the project investigates the impact of forest fragmentation on lemur, reptile and amphibian populations by collecting data in the forests in Sainte Luce.

The forest here is one of only three significant areas of southern coastal forest remaining in Madagascar. Research has shown that many of the large animal species of the forests have been lost and those remaining may not be able to maintain viable populations beyond 2020-2040.

The data collected is used nationally and internationally to highlight the plight of the fauna and flora in Sainte Luce. The Community Conservation module considers the human dimension of conservation in the Sainte Luce region. People living in Sainte Luce are highly dependent on the environment, from flora and fauna to soil conditions required for growing crops.

Tasks can involve environmental education of children in local villages, building fuel-efficient stoves and planting and evaluating the critically endangered palm, Dypsis saintelucei. The Madagascar Conservation Project offers a fantastic opportunity to experience the fascinating island of Madagascar and work to conserve its unique and endangered environment.

project pricing
2 Weeks: USD  GBP 600 EUR 
4 Weeks: USD  GBP 1150 EUR 
6 Weeks: USD  GBP 1650 EUR 
8 Weeks: USD  GBP 2150 EUR 
10 Weeks: USD  GBP 2650 EUR 

Please note a longer placement may be possible - kindly send through an enquiry for more information.

project start date

The volunteer scheme is designed as a 10-week programme starting at the beginning of January, April, July and October each year, but is split into two-week modules which can be taken individually.

Setting up tree nurseries pin it!

Setting Up Tree Nurseries

In 2007, the conservation volunteer project took on the reforestation of 80 hectares of barren land. Crucial to this on-going reforestation activity is the process of setting up tree nurseries, both at the base in Lanirano and in a number of villages. Depending on the time of year you will be involved in tree-planting and reforestation activities.

Environmental education pin it!

Environmental Education

Environmental education is vital for conservation. This has involved the building of a forest information centre in Sainte Luce, the preparation and presentation of posters, and working with local children to raise awareness of the need for conservation.

Fuelefficient stoves pin it!

Fuel-efficient Stoves

As a volunteer you will help promote the construction of fuel-efficient stoves, in an effort to reduce both the pressure on the forest and improve the health of local people. The stoves promoted are simple and can be made from local materials, namely mud, grass and zebu dung. The stove creates an enclosed cooking space which requires less firewood which has a significant positive impact on both forests and livelihoods.

Things to do with your spare time
Ile Sainte Marie

The Ile Sainte Marie lies off the east coast of Madagascar and is one of the top tourist attractions. The still, clear waters make ideal spots for snorkeling. Migrating humpback whales visit the island waters during summer and early fall.

Avenue of the baobabs pin it!
Avenue of the Baobabs

The Avenue of the Baobabs is a group of trees lining the dirt road between Morondava and Belon’i Tsiribihina in western Madagascar. Its striking landscape draws tourists from around the world, making it one of the most visited locations in the region.

Nosy Be

Nosy Be is an island off the northwest coast of Madagascar. It is Madagascar's largest and busiest tourist resort providing a beautiful beach, perfect place to soak up the sun and relax, and enjoy some great cuisine.

About St Luce
About st luce pin it!

Fifty kilometers from southeastern Madagascar’s shipping hub Fort Dauphin, the community of Sainte Luce is where you will be living and working during your volunteer working holiday.   You will camp in some of the most beautiful and remote parts of the island, within rural, isolated communities. Camping facilities are provided but you will need to bring your own tent. At times you will camp at the lake-side site of Lanirano, which is fully equipped with flush toilets and showers as well as electricity. Whilst working in the more rural areas facilities will be more basic. Water is primarily collected as rainwater and will be treated for drinking. Water for washing is available at the well located just beside the campsite.

A resident cook travels with the team and is responsible for preparing meals for you each day. In Fort Dauphin, there are some excellent restaurants serving well-cooked Western and Malagasy dishes for you to try out.

Although you will be expected to work hard the surroundings of lush forests and stunning beaches make it an experience you will cherish forever. This volunteer and work experience will open your eyes to a new way of life as you learn about this amazing location, its people and even discover new things about yourself.

Feedback from our volunteers
Simon Edman

The forest of south eastern Madagascar is a forest full of surprises, of the positive kind that is. You stay in Sainte Luce, which you can say includes a number of hamlets of which all are close to or by the shoreline. In these you will find friendly locals, who know why you are there and are grateful for it. You might even get the chance to take part in a bush party, which means socialize and try out native dances. That is a ”don't miss”! During your stay you will carry out research together with the others, mainly focusing on lemurs, herps (frogs and lizards) as well as a few endangered plants. This means that you will be out in the forest during both daylight and after dark. The latter is a special experience and there is nothing quite like an ”evening lemur transect” or ”evening herp sweep”. You will certainly make a difference if you join the program, not only for the locals but also for yourself.

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