Drone pilot for Severn Curlew Project

Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata is one of the UK’s most pressing conservation priorities and is classified as Near Threatened on the global Red List and is on the UK Red List of Birds of Conservation Concern. The majority of the UK’s breeding Curlew are found in the uplands of northern England and Scotland, however there are a number of key lowland populations in southern England that despite being thinly spread, make up a substantial part of the breeding range in England. The Severn and Avon Vales (SAV) population, which stands at c.35 pairs is one of these populations.

The Severn Curlew Project was set up in 2019 to undertake more in depth monitoring of the SAV Curlew population to determine the key pressures on the population and to mitigate against these, work in coordination with farmers and landowners to conserve the Curlew’s habitat and improve breeding success, and to determine best practice protocols for fieldwork methods in lowland habitats.

In 2019 and 2021 we have undertaken thermal drone surveys of breeding habitat in SAV, in an attempt to locate nests using a high resolution thermal imaging camera. The method has proven successful and we are looking to expand on this work in 2022. We are looking for a qualified and experienced drone operator to assist us in our survey work.

What will you be doing?

  • Visiting designated sites within the Severn and Avon Vales (SAV) to undertake thermal drone surveys of breeding habitat alongside the WWT field team, using WWT drones
  • Assisting with the set-up of the drone to ensure it is working order before undertaking the survey flights
  • Operating the drone within the survey parameters set out by the field team, whilst working within the legal guidelines for drone operation

Who are we looking for?

This role would suit you if:

  • You are an experienced drone pilot with relevant licences (e.g. Pilot ID, GVC)
  • You are confident undertaking flights using drones in excess of 5kg under a variety of weather conditions
  • You have a sound understanding of the legal restrictions around where you can and can’t operate a drone
  • You are a team player and are able to take on instructions quickly and confidently
  • You have an interest in conservation
  • You are able to travel independently to sites within the monitoring area

The role will generally require between 3-4 hours a day between April and May, 1-5 days a week depending on your availability. As the work is weather dependent some flexibility will be required regarding the exact dates and timings of the role. We will mutually agree the hours that you can contribute.

How to Apply

For more information and to apply, please visit: https://www.wwt.org.uk/join-and-support/volunteering/volunteering-opportunities/drone-pilot

Please mention ConservationJobs.co.uk when applying for this job!

Key Information


Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust


Fixed Term


Part Time


Entry Level, Graduate, Mid Level, Postgraduate, Senior


Nature & Wildlife, Research


Severn and Avon Vales, United Kingdom

Application Deadline:

Not specified, apply soon.