Marine Mammal Internship

Marine Mammal Internship is currently not accepting applications for 2018

Project overview:
One mile north of Appledore Island and the Shoals Marine Laboratory lies Duck Island and its surrounding rocky ledges, which are home to nearly a thousand harbor seals (Phoca vitulina) and gray seals (Halichoerus grypus) at the peak of summer. This important haul out site has allowed for ongoing research on seals in the Isles of Shoals since 2011 including: monitoring abundance estimates, photographic mark-recapture studies, individual and species specific site fidelity, incidence of entanglement and injuries, and distributional and behavioral interactions of the two species.

Interns conduct 2-3 boat-based surveys of the Duck Island seal colony each week by photographing all seals along a standardized survey route. Back in the lab, interns analyze and catalog the digital photos as well as associated behavioral and environmental data. Interns also work with their mentors to design an independent research project based on archived and/or new data. Skills that interns will learn throughout this internship program include photography, basic vessel-based research skills, marine mammal biology, data interpretation, and scientific data presentation. Interns will be a part of the larger SML Research Internship cohort and will participate in weekly discussions and lectures.

Internship Mentors:
Dr. Nadine Lysiak (Faculty, UMass Boston) 
Dr. Andrea Bogomolni (Postdoctoral Investigator, WHOI) 
Lisa Sette (Center for Coastal Studies)


Harbor seals (Phoca vitulina). All SML marine mammal internship surveys and photo-data fall under NOAA/NMFS LOC #16260-01, #16260-02, #20412.


Photo of marine mammal intern taking photos from SML research vessel

Vessel-based survey to collect photo-data.


To apply:

SML is not accepting applications for the Marine Mammal Internship for summer 2018. Please view our other internship offerings!

Email Dr. David Buck