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Amazon Conservation - Peru

  • Work alongside scientific researchers to document the Amazon ecosystem
  • Study local wildlife including endangered Blue-headed macaw, jaguars and monkeys
  • Conserve the Amazon rainforest by supporting sustainable community initiatives
  • Live in an award-winning ecolodge in the heart of the Peruvian rainforest
Location South eastern Peru
Start dates Throughout the year (see below for dates)
Duration 2 - 12 weeks
Age requirement 18 + 
Availability Spaces available 
Cost From £1095 / €1415 / $1740 - see fees table below

Volunteer role: What will I be doing? 

Volunteers will support conservation research and sustainable development projects and will be involved in a range of tasks which may include:

  • Documenting rare Blue-headed Macaws by the river bank
  • Capturing footage of local mammals, which may include jaguars, tapirs or peccary
  • Monitoring bird species through mist netting
  • Surveying amphibians and reptiles on transect surveys, pitfall surveys, leaf litter plots and bamboo traps
  • Collecting data on butterflies
  • Collecting data for the Forest Regeneration Project by canopy photos and leaf litter traps
  • Supporting the community building new sustainable biogardens
  • Planting new agroforestry plots

Volunteers normally work 6 days per week. You may work throughout the day with a mix of early mornings and late evenings depending on what research surveys and conservation projects you are assisting. For example you may wake up at dawn to record parrots at the river clay lick or head out into the jungle at dusk with a head torch to record local amphibians and reptiles.

In your first week you will be given presentations and training on the current research projects, neotropical mammals, a tropical ecology tour, reptiles, dawn bird walk, amphibians, species presentations, compass and machete training, species ID tests and a guide to the jungle trails. 

There are normally 6-12 volunteers and around 9 full time local staff and scientists. 

Hear from past Amazon conservation volunteers

Read about volunteer experiences and challenges in our Peru Amazon Conservation reviews.



view photo album | view video


How is the Peru Amazon Conservation project making a difference?

The project was established in 2002 to support conservation research in the Western Amazon rainforest in Peru. As well as environmental research the team focus is on creating sustainable agriculture, timber and carbon alternatives for local communities on deforested land. By effectively reducing the human and carbon footprint, these initiatives aim to increase both the communities’ wellbeing and enhance the region's sustainable offerings.

The research team have identified that deforested land in their region is recovering and increasing in biodiversity quicker than they initially imagined and each year the team have been adding new sightings to the areas species list. This research is vital for influencing government policy on the importance and benefits gained from allowing land to regrow and shows how quickly species re-inhabit the land.

The project has worked with local families turn abandoned wastelands into 52 family biogardens, and have helped build six institutional biogardens which provide nutritious meals for the local school children. This has resulted in an annual increase in income of over 30% for the local community who have worked to build their biogardens, and an increase in child nutrition and health.

Why are volunteers needed? 

Volunteers make a direct contribution to helping preserve the Amazon rainforest in Peru through supporting the conservation research and sustainable community development projects.

The volunteer team have helped turn 17 hectares of abandoned land into agroforestry plots leading to an increase in biodiversity, planted over 13,000 trees, and created the first programme in Peru to ever commercialize carbon credits on behalf of a local community.

Volunteers assist in collecting data on the flora and fauna in the rainforest which is very time consuming so volunteers support is essential. 

“Volunteers are absolutely vital in helping us to achieve our project objectives, and without your help we simply would not be able to achieve the goals we set ourselves. We know about the challenges and solutions facing the Amazon, and volunteers are vital in helping us to make our dream a reality; a sustainable Amazon for everyone.”
Alex, Programme Manager at the Amazon Conservation project in Peru

Where will I be living 

Volunteers live at a verified Rainforest Alliance research centre, on the outskirts of the Western Amazon Nature Reserve. The centre is set in a clearing close to a cascading waterfall and surrounded by Amazon rainforest. The ecolodge is located a two day journey from Cusco which is an incredible journey starting by bus through the Andes and cloud forest and finishing with a motorised canoe along the river.

Volunteers share open-air rooms with splendid views into the rainforest, there are generally two volunteers per room. There are fully equipped bathrooms and  solar powered internet connection (available for a small fee) however the connection is often limited. 

When you are not working you can relax at the centre, play football with the team of local staff, read books, play board games, chill out in the hammocks by the river or go for short bird watching walks around the jungle trails. At weekends volunteers can visit the local town of Salvación. 




What's included

Before you go On your placement
  • Carefully selected and vetted volunteer project
  • Support from our friendly and highly experienced Pod UK team
  • Single point of contact - Gemma is your dedicated placement manager
  • In-depth Volunteering Guide on your volunteering placement
  • Travel information - visa, health and safety advice
  • Access to specialist travel insurance at exclusive rates
  • Recommended travel agency for flights and tours
  • Access to special deals and resources
  • Fundraising guide and support
  • Financial protection for monies paid to Pod
  • Conservation volunteering placement
  • Airport pick up (Cusco) and return transfers
  • 2 nights accommodation in Cusco on arrival and 1 night in Cusco on departure
  • A mountain road trip through the Andes into the rainforest
  • An overnight stay in the cloud forest and visit a cocoa plantation
  • Accommodation - a simple shared room
  • Food - all main meals
  • Induction and training (tropical ecology tour, introduction to species ID test, photography workshop)
  • Onsite support from local team
  • Support from Pod UK office by phone and email
  • 24/7 emergency back up
  • Crisis management plans and insurance
On your return
  • Contact from your placement manager
  • Feedback scheme
  • Volunteering certificate (on request)
  • References (on request)
  • Member of the Pod community
Not included: Flights, travel insurance. Budgeting guidance is provided in our Volunteering Guide which we will email you when you apply.

Pod volunteer fees

Pod is run as a non-profit volunteer organisation. Fee levels are set to match costs and any surplus monies are distributed to the projects we work with via the Pod Charity - for more details click here.

2 weeks £1095 €1415 $1740 $2035
4 weeks £1495 €1930 $2375 $2780
6 weeks £1995 €2575 $3170 $3710
8 weeks £2395 €3090 $3810 $4455
10 weeks £2795 €3605 $4445 $5200
12 weeks £3195 €4120 $5080 $5945

Prices in currencies other than GBP are indicative only and volunteers are invoiced in GBP.  For current exchange rates please see www.xe.com

Start dates 

2015 - 4 Aug, 24 Aug, 1 Sep, 21 Sep, 29 Sept, 19 Oct, 16 Nov, 14 Dec

2016 -  11 Jan, 8 Feb, 7 Mar, 4 Apr, 2 May, 30 May, 27 Jun, 25 Jul, 22 Aug, 19 Sep, 17 Oct, 14th Nov, 12 Dec


We look forward to receiving your application! There is no commitment by applying and we will send more information


Pod UK Manager



Gemma in the Pod UK team is the placement manager for this project so if you apply you will hear from her soon!

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