Internships Community Disease Ecology Peru

Research Assistantship

Research Training Programs Peruvian Amazon

Discover the Peruvian Amazon for personal and professional development against a unique backdrop. In this internship, you will track primate species and groups, observe their behaviour, take samples to monitor the health of the animals and enter data into a database. Experienced scientists will be by your side at all times to pass on their valuable theoretical and practical expertise. This internship is an opportunity for nature lovers to gather international practical experience and get an up close and personal experience of the South American rainforest.

After Brazil and Argentina, Peru is the third largest country in South America. It borders the Pacific to the west, Colombia and Ecuador to the north, Brazil to the east, and Bolivia and Chile to the south. Due to the variety of its landscape, Peru is a popular destination for nature lovers and tourists looking for adventure. The Andes running along the west coast of Peru are the highest and tallest mountain range on earth outside of Asia. They provide a unique mountain landscape where any hiking enthusiast will get their money’s worth. Peru also has a dense rainforest area in the east of the country which is part of the Amazon. This area is considered a biodiversity hotspot due to the large number of endemic animal and plant species. The avifauna (birdlife) is particularly diverse. Over 1800 species live here, more than in Europe and North America together. The area is also home to a number of insects, reptiles and mammals, which make Peru a must see for anybody going to South America.

    Services Our Services


    • Placement in the internship
    • All meals during the internship
    • Assistance with travel arrangements
    • Course-related equipment
    • Assistance with selecting travel insurance
    • Lectures
    • Assistance with booking flights
    • Excursions
    • Pre-departure information pack
    • English-speaking support by long-term experienced staff
    • Airport pick up and drop off
    • Certificate
    • Accommodation during the internship
    • 24/7 support throughout the project

    Not included

    • Flight to/from Puerto Maldonado
    • Meals in Puerto Maldonado
    • Travel insurance
    • Personal expenses and optional excursions
    • Visa fees


    Start DateDurationCostNATUCATE-ID I.PER-001
    4 Weeks 1.900 €

    The prices stated in euros are approximate values. Due to sharp fluctuations in the exchange rate of the Dollar, all prices will be calculated at the time of enquiry.



    All participants are to be at least 18 years of age upon commencement of the programme in addition to them having a good command of the English language. Previous practical experience or research experience is not a requirement but it is an advantage. What is more important is a strong interest in the fields of zoology, biology and anthropology in addition to flexibility, endurance and the readiness to start the day off in the early hours of the morning. The participants should also not be afraid of working in a jungle and the handling of insects and reptiles. As the daily work within the programme is quite strenuous, such as long hikes through the rainforest, all participants need to be adequately fit. Another condition for participating in the programme is the submission of a cover letter describing your motivation for taking part as well as two letters of recommendation. Furthermore we require your CV/résumé and conduct an application interview with you (in English).

    Community Disease Ecology Peru

    After arriving at Puerto Maldonado International Airport, you will be collected by a member of staff and will be spending the first night in a hostel in the city. On the next day, you continue your journey to the Los Amigos research station that is located at the foot of the Southern Andes in the Amazon rainforest.

    The focus of this programme is on species research. The tasks here especially include the identifying of primate species, the following and observation of primate groups and the collecting and securing of faeces samples that can provide the most important information on DNA, the hormonal balance, parasitic infestations and the nutritional habits of an animal. In your leisure time, you can participate in exciting activities such as the tracking of the anaconda that has its habitat in the palm swamp of Pozo don Pedro or the observing of the endangered giant otter in Lake Cocha Lobo.



    At the end of the program, you will be able to

    • Track primates by movement and vocalizations, as well as radio telemetry
    • Work off trail systems, and conduct full-day follows
    • Conduct behavioral observations on known-individuals (scan and focal animal sampling)
    • Record data on feeding ecology
    • Correctly sex individual primates
    • Collect GPS data on species movements to create a large, overarching primate movement database
    • Become proficient in collecting and storing primate fecal samples in field conditions, including participating in downstream applications like endocrinology and parasite analyses
    • Input sample and movement information into databases for further analyses.


    Accommodation in Peru

    The research station will be your home during the programme. Houses a laboratory, a classroom, a library, a dining room and two dormitories, where the programme participants are accommodated. The dormitories have bunk beds and shared bathrooms.

    You will be provided with breakfast, lunch and dinner during your stay in the research station and snacks are also available during your meals. The food supply is relatively balanced, even if fresh vegetables are not always available. Please inform us in advance should you have any special dietary needs (e.g. purely vegetarian meals). It is also possible that you will be staying one night in Puerto Maldonado after you have left the research station. During this stay in the hostel, you will be provided with breakfast but you will have to obtain your lunch and dinner yourself. A good and satisfying meal can be obtained for just a few euros.


    Everybody interested in internships abroad should be able to adjust to entirely unfamiliar standards of living in their future host country. Therefore, we would like to point out the importance of being flexible and adaptable regarding the accommodation and sanitary facilities provided by the project. Those are very basic and – depending on the project – cannot be compared to European standards. The equipment and furnishings are limited to a minimum; air conditioning is not available. Depending on your host country occasional power blackouts or water outages are quite common. Please contact us if you have further questions about your accommodation. We are pleased to provide you with comprehensive information since we would like you to feel entirely prepared for your time abroad.

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