If you are local to Rhode Island you may want to check to see if we have volunteer opportunities. Currently running local projects are: The Narragansett Bay Coyote Study and the New England Cottontail Project. Contact Dr. Numi Mitchell by email to check availability.
Other volunteer opportunities may be available on international expeditions on a pay-as-you-go basis. Projects are ongoing in Asia and the British Virgin Islands. Contact Dr. James Lazell by email to check for availability.
This approach to tax-deductible investment was developed more than two decades ago by Earthwatch and the Center of Field Studies. TCA offers it too, on a more personally tailored basis. There are literally dozens of places we need to get to in the world in order to conduct our biological field work. Some, like the Far Moluccas or Typhoon islands, are truly remote, difficult, even dangerous places to visit. Expeditions unknown. Others are places that are easy to reach and that have lovely accommodations, fine food, and glorious climates and scenery – like many islands in the West Indies, such as Guana Island in the British Virgins, Dominica, and St. Vincent, or special places in Asia like Bali and South China Sea islands like Lantau, Shek Kwu Chau, and Nan Ao. The point is that it is your choice! In consultation with our staff biologists, you select a place where we need to do scientific investigation of a rare species or a unique ecosystem. You choose based on your interest and the sort of accommodations you want. Then, you make the tax-deductible donation and off we go – on what for dozens of people over the years has turned out to be the most memorable and wonderful sojourn of their lives…
We think this is a big notch up from a brass plaque. We have several apparently new, nameless species of animals we have discovered over the years. The scientifically tedious process of doing the comparative research necessary to properly describe them and get their new names published gets expensive. Most new species are named by scientists with salaries on university or museum staffs as full-time employees. They usually do not discover as many things as we do.
We have named, or have discovered and plan to name, a wonderful assortment of little-known animals from wallabies and rabbits to flying lizards and rattlesnakes. Some are cute and cuddly; some are huge and awe-inspiring. Once again, it’s your choice… or you can do both. In many cases, we need funds to do more research on a potential new species where it lives. New species are easiest to find in remote places that are difficult to get to, of course, but that is not always the case. Sometimes all that stops us from describing a new species is that the place where it lives is unapproachable unless one can afford hotel accommodations or a yacht charter. Believe it or not there are still new, nameless species of animals in places like the West Indies and Hawaii whose habitats are within minutes of great hotels and restaurants. In the last few years, for example, we have described a new rabbit from the Florida Keys and several new lizards from the Lesser Antilles and Virgin Islands. We have what may prove to be a new rabbit from Alabama, and a certain new species of salamander from Mississippi. You might be able to sponsor a new species expedition without even leaving home! (But that might not be as much fun as St. Barts, or the Far Moluccas!) If a unique experience or a species all your own sounds good to you, please contact us. We know the places and the wildlife. We just need your help to get the job done.