Empowering the youth for otter conservation

Capacity building is the current conservation need. While there is no dearth of enthusiasm and interest among people, there is a gap in the professional development opportunities. WILD OTTERS wants to address this situation and aid in creating a pool of well trained human resources who can further take the cause of conservation and contextualize it in their respective local environments.

WILD OTTERS conducts hands-on training workshops on otter ecology and conservation needs; and provides internship opportunities to selected individuals, thereby building regional capacity to conserve wildlife and their habitats.
Here is what some of them had to say about their experiance

Andrew Underwood

Wildlife Researcher, California, USA

I had a great time hanging out with researchers from another country and finding out how they did things. I feel that this experience will help me hone my ideas for my own study protocol when applying to grad school, and will give me a more competitive foothold on future endeavors. It was also good to have Atul be so patient with some of my stupid questions, as I had a lot of them. Thanks Wild Otters!

Lela Updegrave

Wildlife Researcher, Colorado, USA

I feel I learned a TON about the behavior of otters watching so much footage. And a lot about the threats to otters and really all wildlife in India. And I knew nothing really about Small-clawed or Smooth-coated otters before coming here and now I feel like I know them very well. A LOT of tea, and weird bread-stick fingers :). We spent most of our days watching otter camera trap footage and in the field we walked a lot in the heat of India up streams and rivers looking for otter tracks and sign.

Abhishek Gopal

Bachelors Student of Computer Science at New Horizon College of Engineering, Banglore, India

Working with Wild Otters has been a good learning and a rewarding experience. Coming from a non-wildlife background it was very interesting to do surveys, use camera traps etc. and to understand the ground realities about conservation. I now have a better understanding of otter ecology and their behavior. I look forward to working with them in the future.

Marta Gomez Moro

Environmentalist, Salamanca, Spain

I have had a deeply rewarding experience volunteering for wild otters, learning new methods for carrying out mustelids surveys and discovering new habitats and ecosystems. I feel really enthusiastic about having had the chance of knowing these two species of otters. And I’ve spent a nice time with the staff.

Sindhura S. B.

Bachelors student of Zoology at St. Francis' College, Hyderabad, India

My internship with “Wild Otters” completely exceeded my expectations of what I thought I would learn on the field. I interned for 10 days and every day was an exciting experience as I learnt something new. The two major things I learnt were: how to conduct occupancy studies and how to set up camera traps. With the help of the data received from the camera traps I was able to observe some characteristic behavioural aspects of otters. And god! They are so cute! Another fun thing was that, we had to build and test a kayak. This internship has allowed me to explore wildlife as a career path.

Anushka Rege

Masters Student of Wildlife Biology and Conservation at National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS), Banglore, India

I had a thoroughly enriching experience. I learnt the basics of conducting surveys, setting up camera traps. Talking to the localities at various locations put me in a position to appreciate the bigger picture of conservation in Goa. As Wild Otters is still in its infancy, I also got a good idea of the highs and lows that a new NGO can go through. This internship was a much needed respite from academic sessions and has taught me a lot! I also enjoyed the kayak making sessions. There was a fair balance of work and play. I look forward to contributing in the future as well.

Shweta S. B.

Masters Student of Wildlife Biology and Conservation at National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS), Banglore, India

The internship with Wild otters was my first experience of working with aquatic carnivorous mammals. The internship was a good blend of wildlife biology research and conservation. It was very useful for me personally as saw the practical implementation of various techniques, courses and software's taught to me as a part of my wildlife biology masters. Learning the technique of camera trapping was also a very useful and widely applicable technique. I hope to get another opportunity in the future to work for a longer time on the social behavior of otters.