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Intern with Falcons in Mexico

  • Placement locations: Guadalajara
  • Role: Assisting with the rehabilitation of falcons
  • Requirements: None. Anyone aged 16 and older can join
  • Type of placement: Animal care and rescue centre, fieldwork
  • Accommodation: Host family
  • Length of placement: From 2 weeks
  • Start dates: Flexible

A Projects Abroad volunteer on the Falconry Project in Mexico gets assistance from a local staff member during a training session.

Interning on Projects Abroad’s Falconry Project in Mexico is a wonderful opportunity for anyone looking to gain practical experience working with wild birds of prey. The project is based at a care and rescue centre for animals in Guadalajara, and your main focus here will be to help rehabilitate injured and rescued birds for the purpose of releasing them back into their natural environment.

Mexico is an incredibly biodiverse country with an abundance of wildlife. In particular, Mexico has more than 30 different species of birds of prey. Owing to their dispersal and large numbers across the country, they are often found in urban environments.

Unfortunately, this means that many birds of prey are killed or injured through the everyday risks of trying to survive in a human environment, from collisions with vehicles to trying to nest in occupied buildings. The illegal wildlife trade also presents a massive threat to birds of prey, as they are highly sought after and are frequently in danger of being caught and sold illegally as pets.

A large number of injured birds and birds rescued from the animal traffickers are taken to a center in Guadalajara, where they can be rehabilitated. Here, the goal is to rehabilitate the birds (mostly birds of prey, falcons in particular) so that they can be re-introduced into the wild. The rescue centre lacks resources and staff and urgently needs interns and volunteers who can work with the birds every day to prepare them for their eventual release.

Working with Falcons in Mexico with Projects Abroad

A staff member at Projects Abroad's Falconry Project in Mexico holds a falcon that is in the process of being trained.

Joining the Falconry Project is an opportunity for you to learn all aspects of falconry and gain practical experience training and rehabilitating birds of prey. When it comes to helping to condition the birds and build their strength, a number of different techniques are used. During your time at the project you will be able to take part in different roles involving these techniques.

The depth of your involvement is dependent on how long you stay at the project. The longer you stay, the more you can learn and do. Interns who are able to stay for a longer period will be assigned their own bird for the duration of their placement and can participate in all of the activities involved with the bird’s rehabilitation and care.

We recommend that interns come to the project between the months of October and March. This period is the start of the flight season, where trainers focus on encouraging the birds to fly in environments where they can hunt for food naturally.

From April to September, rehabilitation work is primarily focused on improving the physical condition of the birds in preparation for flight season.

This project is ideal for interns who have a lot of patience and have a strong interest in working with birds. With effort, dedication, and perseverance, you will soon see the tangible results of your work!

The Falconry Project in Mexico is available for two or three weeks if you don't have time to join us for four weeks or more. This project has been selected by our local colleagues as being suitable for shorter durations for both the host community and the volunteer. Although you will gain valuable cultural insight and work intensely within the local community please be aware that you may not be able to make the same impact as someone participating for a longer period.

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