Indo Ocean Project was founded by marine biologists, dive instructors, and ocean enthusiasts from around the globe to create a nation wide standardized data collection and research diver training program in Indonesia, the heart of the coral triangle. IOP has been working together with dive operators, various universities, and the local communities to carry out scientific research to address shark, ray, and marine conservation issues in the Indo-Pacific area.

Our field expeditions in Indonesia hosts international and local research projects focused on marine mega fauna and coral reef conservation in marine reserves across the country.

The aim of the Indo Ocean Project is to generate high quality scientific data to inform local mangers and stakeholders about the status of shark and ray populations in the Marine Protect Area (MPA), and to increase marine conservation awareness among the local communities and general public.

You don’t need to be a diver or scientist to apply! Our project relies on the experience and expertise of our volunteers from around the world to take action and take part.

Project Locations

1 – Penida Project: Located on the island of Nusa Penida off the south eastern coast of Bali in the Lombok Straight. The Penida MPA hosts a year round population of manta rays, seasonal sightings of mola mola, and beautiful coral reefs. But watch out! Penida is famous for strong currents and cold upwellings which bring in nutrient rich waters.

Entry Airport: Denpasar (Bali)

Current Projects: BRUV, roving survey, coral nursery & restoration, coral biodivesity mapping, turtle ID, mangrove resortation, marine debris survey

2 – Bunaken Project: Located on the beautiful remote island of Pulau Bunaken off the Norther tip of Sulawesi around 40 minute boat ride from Manado City. Be dazzled by this national marine park’s crystal clear water, macro life, sea horses, reef sharks, eagle rays, turtles, and wall dives. Bunaken is where the water doesn’t go below 27 degrees and the longshore currents make for spectacular drift diving.

Entry Airport: Mando City

Current Projects: BRUV, roving survey dives, coral biodiversity mapping, turtle ID, marine debris survey

3 – Bira Project: **Coming Soon** Located on the south eastern tip of Sulawesi in a famous ship building community os Bira. This untouched paradise is around a 5 hour drive from Indonesian third most populated city, Makasar. Picturesque private beaches and unexplored dive sites which is known as Indoneisa’s number one shark diving destination. Blue warm water and thriving coral reefs are the main draw to this remote part of Sulawesi.

Entry Airport: Makasar

Current Projects: BRUV, roving survey dives, coral biodiversity mapping, shark & turtle ID, marine debris survey, mangrove restoration, coral nursery & restoration

**Recruitment beginning June 2019 for a project opening in October 2019, but sign up for a Bira contact list to receive news and updates about this exciting new project**

Why Us?

Indonesia is the 4th most populated country in the world, the number one shark fishing nation, and second largest contributor to ocean plastic pollution. Geogrpahically, Indonesia should have some of the highest biodiversity of predatory species in the world, but the high demand for shark fins and manta ray gill rakers has caused severe overfishing across the country and nearly exhausted the population. This is the front lines of marine mega fauna conservation efforts. We are able to supply a constant underwater monitoring program to our partnering Marine Protected Areas (MPA). Project’s like Indo Ocean Project exist to fill the gap between marine park officals and the data required to manage using a standardized method allowing for a comparative study of MPA’s.

You don’t need to be a scientist to get involved! During our program you will undergo a thoughour dive and research methodolgy training before taking an active roll in our various projects.

About The Internship

Why become a Dive Master?

The Divemaster course is your first level of professional training. Working closely with your mentoring Dive Instructor and Nomads’ team, you’ll fine tune your dive skills, like perfecting the effortless hover, and refine your rescue skills so you anticipate and easily solve common problems. You’ll gain dive knowledge, management and supervision abilities so you become a role model to divers everywhere.

As a Divemaster, you’ll lead others as you supervise scuba diving activities and assist with diver training. Divemasters are respected dive professionals who are aligned with the largest and most respected dive organization in the world – PADI.

Before you can be a good research diver, you first must be a good diver. The Dive Master and Research Diver Internship will give you the skills needed to work either in marine conservation/research or the diving industry. You will meet like-minded individuals and be able to network with experienced and aspiring marine biologists and organizations from around the world.

What will you learn?

The Divemaster course teaches you to be a leader and take charge of dive activities. Through knowledge development sessions with your mentoring instructor, Watermanship skills exercises and workshops, and hands on practical assessment, you develop the skills to organize and direct a variety of scuba activities. In partnership with your research diver internship you will be able to conduct and lead various marine research. For more information about what you will learn and the workshops.

Current Projects

As an Indo Ocean intern you will be trained in various research methods and trusted to adhere to our strict methodology laid out during your training period. We host multiple research and conservation projects and you will be expected to assist in the operation, running, and planning of each of these.

Currently there have 4 resident projects with 2 projects under development.

  1. BRUV (Baited Remote Underwater Video) – underwater video survailance to monitor shark, ray, and fisheries target species populations throughout the MPA. A batied camera is dropped 4x per week throughout the reserve and left to record for 1 hour. The footage is later analaysed by our team and submitted to Dr. Mark Bond at Florida International University and The Coral Triangle Centre in Bali.
  2. Roving Survey Dive – 30 minute stardized survey where certified research divers actively seek out and positively identify indicator species. Data is logged and shared with various local and international sources.
  3. The Great Ocean Log – an application launching in April 2019 as a platform for citizen scientists around the world to consolodate their surveys. A free, open access data base of standardized citizien science practices.
  4. Coral Restoration – interns collect naturally occuring cora fragments from the surrounding areas and attach them to a fixed rope structure between 5m-12m. As the fragments grow large enough they are out-planted to nearby reefs of similar depths via the hitching technique.
  5. Mangrove Restoration – collecting of mangrove propogules round the coastlines and cultivating them in our mangrove nurseries where the seedlings are cared for. Around 3-5 months later they are ready for transplanting in predetermined locations around the project site.
  6. Biodiversity Mapping – in order to better understand the biodiversity of a region and the impacts of tourism over time, we produce a high resolution and detailed map and inventory on the overall biodiversity of our house reefs. Positively identified benthic and sessile organisms and cryptic invertebrates to the lowest possible classification. Using a quadrat surveying method, interns take to the ocean and map a large area using photo identification and GPS positioning.
  7. Shark, Turtle, & Manta Photo ID – profile pictures of turtles, sharks, and rays are taken and logged into the Great Ocean Log’s data base using i3s identification software as well as shared with other photo ID organizations.

For more information about what a typical day is like and about all the different packages and prices 

Next Step – Applications are accepted year round for any start dates. However with limited spaces available you may have to be flexible. High season is from June – October and spots fill up quickly during these dates. You can apply ONLINE or contact [email protected] for more information.