• A group opportunity. Invite your friends.
  • 7 people are interested

Road to Freedom - Wildlife Internship Costa Rica

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ORGANIZATION: Rescate Wildlife Rescue Center

  • A group opportunity. Invite your friends.
  • 7 people are interested

Our Bosque Escondido internship gives you the unique opportunity to not only see, but to play an active part in what we call: The Road to Freedom. Our Rescate Wildlife Rescue Center in La Garita, Alajuela receives hundreds of primates and other animals that have been rescued from the pet trade, injured, sick, or orphaned. It is at Bosque Escondido on the Nicoya Peninsula that we see the fruition of our team’s hard work, and aid the animals in their release and their second chance at life in the wild, the final step on their Road to Freedom.

If needed, we are happy to help you design a program that meets your university’s academic requirements for credit.


  • Minimum of 2 weeks

  • Interest in Conservation, Endangered Species Rehabilitation, Biology, Ecology, and/or Forestry
  • Respect for and commitment to Rescate aims, objectives, and ethos
  • A positive "can-do" attitude and the ability to work well in a globally diverse team environment
  • The ability to work calmly around animals in a respectful and humane matter
  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Moderate degree of physical fitness


  • Health insurance while in Costa Rica
  • Basic Spanish proficiency is helpful but all our internships are conducted in English
  • Tolerance for various field conditions (heat, humidity, rain)

What you will be doing:

  • Working with teams to monitor and release critically endangered and rescued Spider Monkeys, Howler Monkeys, Capuchin Monkeys, Peccaries, Macaws, Parrots, and more
  • Collecting data during the prerelease process to help us determine release fitness
  • Monitor the animals post-release to ensure their long-term survival
  • Prepare food, refill wildlife feeding stations, and quantify how much has been eaten
  • Conceptualize, create, and implement environmental enrichment activities for the animals in pre-release
  • Identify and collect natural foods to teach the animals to forage for food post-release
  • Personal Project : Volunteers who stay 8 weeks or longer, have the opportunity to create and carry out a personal project based on an area of their interest or conduct research for your university

Example Schedule

Every day is different, but here is a sample of what you might expect:

6:00 - 7:00: Collect natural foods for the animals in prerelease habitats

7:00 - 8:00: Observe macaws, parrots, or monkeys at the feeding stations and record data

8:00 - 9:00: Breakfast

9:00 - 12:00: Create and implement environmental enrichment for animals in prerelease habitats

1:00 - 2:00: Lunch

2:00 - 4:30: Tracking and data collection of Spider Monkey troops

6:00 - 7:00: Dinner

Knowledge and Skills that will be developed:

  • Ethical wildlife conservation and critically endangered species practices
  • Wildlife behavioral observations
  • Data collection and analysis
  • Wildlife tracking techniques
  • Learn how to utilize the ZooMonitor program
  • Ability to identify and collect various natural foods for wildlife
  • Ability to conceptualize, create, and implement environmental enrichment for wildlife
  • Field experience alongside experts

Cost and Benefits

Internship costs vary depending on the length of stay.

Housing: Provided by Rescate. Interns will live in a newly renovated shared housing unit. Accommodations include utilities, Wifi, laundry, bathrooms, showers, shared kitchen and social area

Meals: 3 meals a day are provided 7 days a week. (Special dietary requirements can be accommodated on request)

After-hours activities: Game nights, movie nights, workshops, and more

Other: All other costs are to be paid for by the intern. This includes travel expenses, medical insurance, offsite entertainment expenses

Days off: Interns have two days off a week. On days off you have the opportunity to travel in Costa Rica. We can recommend beaches, hikes, trips, and more!

Certificate and University Credit: If you stay a month or longer, you have the opportunity to receive a certificate of completion. We are happy to help you design a program that meets your university’s academic requirements for credit.


The Road to Freedom Program payment contributes directly to fund running the internship program and the rescue center.

Duration Cost in USD Duration Cost in USD

1 Week --- 11 Weeks 5,025

2 Weeks 1,000 3 Months 5,450

3 Weeks 1,475 13 Weeks 5,875

1 Month 1,950 14 Weeks 6,300

5 Weeks 2,400 15 Weeks 6,725

6 Weeks 2,850 4 Months 7,150

7 Weeks 3,300 17 Weeks 7,550

2 Months 3,750 18 Weeks 7,950

9 Weeks 4,175 19 Weeks 8,350

10 Weeks 4,600 5 Months 8,750

For more information, photos, and other volunteer programs, please visit our website at: www.rescatewildlife.org/volunteer

Please reach out via email to jeanne.marie@rescatewildlife.org if you have any questions about the internship or the application process, we look forward to connecting with you.

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About Rescate Wildlife Rescue Center


2.3 km al este del cruce de Manolo's, ruta 3, haci, City of Alajuela, Provincia de Alajuela, Costa Rica 000000, CR

Mission Statement

To protect and restore Costa Rica’s biodiversity through wildlife rehabilitation endangered species breeding, habitat preservation, and the provision of lifetime care for non-releasable animals and to educate the public at large on the importance of global biodiversity and habitat preservation.


Rescate Wildlife Rescue Center is a registered non-profit wildlife rehabilitation facility founded in 1989 and located on 34 acres of natural forest in the province of Alajuela, Costa Rica. Rescate Wildlife Rescue Center's mission is to protect and restore Costa Rica’s biodiversity through wildlife rehabilitation, endangered species breeding, habitat preservation, and the provision of lifetime care for non-releasable animals.

There are three main centers at Rescate Wildlife Rescue Center's facility in Alajuela, a state-of-the-art Wildlife Rescue Center and veterinary clinic, an Endangered Species Breeding Center and a Lifetime Care Animal Sanctuary consisting of 35 acres of lush tropical forest with more than 125 species of animals. Over 3,000 wild animals are admitted to Rescate Wildlife Rescue Center on an annual basis, including sloths, jaguars, tapirs, pumas, coyotes, and monkeys, as well as a wide variety of birds, small mammals, and reptiles. Roughly 800 of the birds, mammals, and reptiles that have been rescued cannot be released due to health or behavioral reasons. Non-releasable endangered species are maintained in the Endangered Species Breeding Center, where they have an opportunity to contribute to the survival of their species through successful breeding and release of offspring. Non-releasable wildlife of more common species are provided with lifetime sanctuary in the Lifetime Care Animal Sanctuary.


Animals, Environment, International


We'll work with your schedule.


Rescate Wildlife Rescue Centre2.3 km east of the Manolo's crossing, route 3La Garita, Provincia de Alajuela, Costa Rica Costa Rica



  • Animal Care / Handling


  • Group


  • Must be at least 18

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