Conservation job with primates - Release coordinator (Nigeria) ~

1 de octubre de 2015

Conservation job with primates - Release coordinator (Nigeria)

The Organisation

The Centre for Education, Research and Conservation of Primates and Nature (CERCOPAN) is a UK-registered Charity (Reg. No. 1116955) with operations in Cross River State, Nigeria. Since 1995, CERCOPAN has worked to conserve Nigeria’s primates and rainforests. CERCOPAN currently has two sites: an administrative and primate rehabilitation headquarters in Calabar, and a field centre at Rhoko Forest, Iko Esai. Sadly CERCOPAN has been severely affected by the world recession and is compelled to commence the wind-down of its operations in Calabar, with every aim to do this in an orderly manner, as the welfare of the animals is paramount. An international ‘Task Force’ is liaising with CERCOPAN to try to bring this about, and a programme to release monkey species into Rhoko is a primary strategy to help phase out the Calabar rescue facility. Rhoko Forest, the base for CERCOPAN’s forest conservation and release programs to date, is located approximately 90km north of Calabar. It was established as a result of a long-term agreement with the Iko Esai community. The site is home to 60 semi-free-ranging forest monkeys, almost all of whom are candidates for release. Immediately around the camp an array of wildlife including pangolins, wild putty-nosed guenons, red-eared guenons, mona monkeys, bushbabies, duikers, golden cats and drills are regularly seen. Forest patrols are carried out 24/7 to ensure no illegal activities take place in the area.

The Position

CERCOPAN is recruiting for a Release Coordinator, based in Rhoko Forest, to start as soon as possible for a minimum period of 6 months with possibility of extension. The role of the Primate Coordinator is to supervise and manage all forthcoming Rhoko primate Release projects with input from the Veterinary team, expert Task Force members and the CERCOPAN Board of Trustees. We are looking for someone with a strong background in primatology, animal behaviour or reintroduction with the ability to hit the ground running. The ideal candidate will be patient, dedicated, hard-working, flexible, amicable, and a team player. They must also have the ability to cope well under stress and live happily in basic forest living conditions. The rainforest site is approximately 40 minutes from the nearest village and 3 hours from Calabar. This is an excellent opportunity for those wishing to make a real difference to the conservation and welfare of primates, given that the imminent releases will be actively saving the lives of these animals and giving them a second chance at living in the wild.

Essential Skills and Competencies

Experience working in the tropics
Educated to MSc level in Animal Behaviour, Ecology, Zoology or other appropriate subject
Experience collecting behavioural data
Ability to analyse/ process data and use statistical techniques
Excellent written and verbal communication skills
Experience/understanding of reintroduction techniques
Interest in Conservation/Primates
Physically fit and prepared to spend long periods of time in the field

Desired Skills and Competencies

Experience working in Africa
Staff management experience
Primate Reintroduction experience
Primate care experience
Experience living in remote rural locations
Project management experience


Collate and summarise all previous release data, methods and tests, and re-evaluate to formulate a new release plan, with input from expert task force, vet team and Board of Trustees.
Prepare animal background information and documentation needed by Nigerian government for releases
Coordinate all aspects of primate release preparation with input from Vet team and Board of Trustees
Collect behavioural data on captive/ released/ wild primates
Ensure all research data is entered into a database and analysed
Prepare reports and updates on the reintroduction as and when needed
Publish data on primates in posters and scientific papers whenever possible

Checking on, observing, and care for Rhoko captive primates as and when needed
Assist with the care, observation and medication of sick animals
Assisting where possible and appropriate in medical emergencies
Conduct checks on animal health and numbers
Conduct checks on purchased supplies and monitor/attempt to limit waste and cut costs whenever possible wherever possible.
Assist in developing improved methods of enclosure maintenance/construction and enrichment as funding and staffing permit

Supervise Primate Care and relevant Research staff based at Rhoko and remotely at the release site

Give talks to conservation clubs, community members, students etc. as and when required
Maintain cordial and respectful relationship with Chiefs’ Council, Village Head and Clan Head of Iko Esai
Ensure health and safety of staff
Collaborate with other Researchers and volunteers on projects when needed
Represent CERCOPAN at appropriate fora, and maintain cordial relations with colleagues within and outside the organisation, and government bodies of CRS and Nigeria.
As directed by management, assist with any other sectors as required ensuring smooth and efficient operation, and in general, operating as a strong team player in the CERCOPAN organisation

£500 a month stipend, Board and Lodgings, Flight and visas. Vaccinations and insurance are the responsibility of the post holder.

Please send covering letter, references and CV to

Position to be filled as soon as appropriate candidate found. For further information, please see the CERCOPAN website, blog or Facebook fan page

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