from the air. Photo Credit Cook Islands Tourism and Ewan Smith
The Aitutaki Lagoon Monitoring Project
is an ongoing research project using eco-volunteers to survey and
report on the health of the lagoon environment.
Small groups of 10 eco-volunteers will embark
on a 6 week mission to survey the Aitutaki lagoon. Each expedition
builds on the work done of the previous expeditions to contribute
to an ongoing report that is used by the people of Aitutaki to better
understand and manage their environment.
All participants will learn
to apply in water survey techniques using scuba, snorkelling and
reef walks while living on a remote motu (islet) in a self contained
Aitutaki has been made famous as the set for
movies and tv shows including Shipwrecked and Survivour.
The Aitutaki Lagoon Monitoring Project has
its base on the motu of Akaiami. The project is housed in Akaiami
Lodge, a basic homestead on a stunning deserted beach. Each day
volunteers will awaken to the long shadows of the coconut palms
extending out over the crystal water and in the evening, watch the
sun set off the beach with the golden hues reflected in the water.
You love everything about the ocean –
the waves, the reefs, the lifestyle. Your perfect day is a day spent
in the water. You are passionate about conserving the marine environment
for future generations and willing to make sacrifices in order to
do so. You are not above hard work for a good cause. You are excited
to continue your education in marine science. You realize that reading
from textbooks is a good place to start, but that nothing can replace
hands-on field experience. You do not want to sit and watch as life
passes you by. You want to change the world, but don’t know
where to begin. Begin with the Aitutaki Lagoon Monitoring Project.