Waterton Lakes National Park – Volunteer Opportunities

Waterton Lakes National Park has new volunteer opportunities!


iNaturalist - Anytime, using smartphone app

Become a self-guided citizen scientist for Waterton Lakes National Park!

Using the free mobile app, report any species (big or small) you see and their location. Don't forget to snap a picture! Discover what others citizen scientists are finding or use iNaturalist to ID a species you may not recognize. The data collected helps scientists better understand and protect environments – not only in Waterton Lakes National Park, but worldwide!

Visit the iNaturalist page for Waterton Lakes National Park.

Note: Once downloaded, this app doesn't require cellular data or a Wi-Fi connection.


Salamander habitat hero

March/April – half day (some years, also third Saturday in September)

Approaching Waterton village, visitors pass through the land of the long-toed salamander and into their story. You can be a habitat hero in that ongoing story by helping to maintain the crossing structures first put in place in 2008 to reduce the salamander road kills during their movements to and from Linnet Lake. Long-toed and tiger salamanders, western toads and red-sided garter snakes will all benefit from your help.

The spring date is timed in an attempt to come after the snow has melted and before the spring rains when salamanders move from their wintering areas. Depending on the state of wood-debris cover for them along the lake shore, there may also be a September volunteer opportunity.

Requirements:

  • Prepared for full half-day outside, including sturdy footwear and clothing layers suitable for the very changeable weather;
  • Able to perform repetitive, light physical labour (shovel work and bending over);
  • Comfortable working on sloped terrain and along a roadway.

Volunteer Duties:

  • Clearing obstructions from the byway tunnel entrances and putting accumulated soil and fine gravels into buckets for use to fill gaps;
  • Filling any gaps under byway fencing using careful shovel work and between the fencing joins using a caulking gun (supplied);
  • Pruning plants growing over or that have fallen over the byway fencing;
  • Picking up (litter-picker supplied), bagging and removing any litter along the system.

Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup

First Saturday in May, second Saturday in September

Don’t let wind blow that litter away! Park volunteers team up with Awesome Adventures to scour Waterton's shorelines for litter at popular lake shores as part of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup.

It is a citizen science project, too. We count and record the type of trash as we pick it up and send the data to the national coordinator. That data “played a key role” in the federal government’s Science Assessment of Plastic Pollution report, which helped form its October 2020 announcement that six single-use plastic items will be banned by the end of 2021. The data is also used in the park to track trends and inform operations.

Awesome Adventures of Lethbridge organize the underwater divers and Parks Canada organizes the shoreline volunteers.

Requirements:

  • Able to perform repetitive, light physical labour (bending over, picking up);
  • Comfortable working along the shoreline at the edge of a lake, including supervising your own children there;
  • Interested in working in small, physically distanced teams that count and record each piece of litter picked up;
  • Prepared for a half-day outside along the shoreline, including rubber boots and a spare change of socks and pants, just in case.

Volunteer duties:

  • Hike along shorelines to pick up and bag litter or collect litter from the divers as they bring it out to the shoreline;
  • Long-handled litter pickers, garbage bags and dish gloves or water resistant gloves provided by the park.

For more information and to apply, please visit Volunteering at Waterton Lakes National Park or email  wlnp-volunteer@pc.gc.ca.