Partnership is at the heart of the important conservation work we do at Point Blue.  Several of our efforts rely on partnering with passionate citizens.

Skilled volunteers make it possible for Point Blue to learn about the habitat needs of shorebirds, grow plants for our climate-smart habitat restorations, and put on events that engage partners and supporters of our conservation work.

Our volunteer positions require some skill or experience, but most provide additional training in skills needed to perform the citizen scientist or volunteer role.  Explore options we offer below for volunteer and citizen science involvement in our work.

If you posess a skill or have an interest that you think could contribute to the work we do outside of what we've listed, feel free to contact us and let us know what you have in mind.

Whale Alert- West Coast

Join other nature lovers, fishers, and mariners to help reduce ship strikes to whales using your smart phone!  Learn more and download the app by visiting the Whale Alert- West Coast webpage. (photo: Sophie Webb)

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Pacific Flyway Shorebird Survey

Make Shorebirds Count! Volunteer as a shorebird counter between November 15th and December 15th every year in several locations.  Learn more by visiting the Pacific Flyway Shorebird Survey website's "Volunteer" page.

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Migratory Shorebird Project

Be part of Connecting Communities Across the Americas and team up with us the the PFSS (above) or one of our international conservation partners to count shorebirds or help with outreach.  Visit the Migratory Shorebird Project website to learn more and find a contact in your area.

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STRAW Program

Be part of the climate-smart solution to habitat loss and environmental degradation by helping our Students and Teachers Restoring A Watershed (STRAW) Program staff tend plants in San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge nursery, water and weed at one of many STRAW restoration sites, or help out on a restoration day.  

Find out what we could use your help with by contacting Alison Pollack, STRAW Restoration Technician, at

High School Volunteer Program
Be part of the solution to helping wildlife and human communities adapt to climate change: Help restore native habitat with a climate-smart lens!

Accepting inquiries for Summer Break 2019

Contact: Alison Pollack,, 707-781-2555 x384

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Help Snowy Plovers at

The Annual Mud Stomp Volunteer Opportunity

Point Blue Avian Ecologist, Carleton Eyster and Elkhorn Slough Foundation Reserve Docent Coordinator, Amanda Ankenbrandt,  coordinate this public event to raise awareness of and create habitat for Snowy Plovers.  Participants stomp shallow divots in mudflats to provide nesting sites for the Western Snowy Plover which lays eggs in shallow depressions in the ground or in beach sands above the wrack line. The footprints also provide disruptive ground cover that can help plover chicks, which are flightless for their first month, to avoid predators.

This event is now part of Point Blue's Monthly Bird & Conservation Walk schedule in April.  View our 2013 Stomp photo album on our Facebook page.  View a video of the 2015 stomp made by attendee Jaqueline Deely below.



Explore our resources and recommendations for birders and nature lovers for plover friendly beach recreation tips and more.

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Membership & Events

The Point Blue Membership Team has need of a volunteer in our Petaluma headquarters to assist with data entry and member record updates in our development database. If you have time to spare, are experienced in data entry or have computer skills and like connecting with people, please contact Pete McCormick, Advancement Operations Manager, or (707) 781-255 x 356.

Point Blue has several regular events throughout the year as well as occasional fundraising events that require a fair bit of human power to pull off.  We are lucky enough to be supported by a good number of members and we want to support them back.  Unfortunately sometimes we don't have enough paid staff to do all the thanking and shout-outing we want to do. If you are experienced in event planning or consider yourself a people person and are interested in helping out with our events and membership activities, contact Jaime Lilly, Manager of Community Engagement, or 707-781-2555, ext 320.

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Point Blue Lab

At our headquarters in Petaluma, California, we have an amazing wet lab stocked with microscopes, beakers, Petri dishes, and even a ventilation hood.  We don't usually wear lab coats though... sorry to shatter the stereotype.  If you like treasure hunts and tiny details, you might want to consider volunteering in our lab.  We do really cool things like dissecting seabird pellets (which consist of regurgitated indigestible material), in search of magical fish ear bones called otoliths.  Well, they are not actually magical, but they tell us a lot of information about what seabirds are eating and what is going on in the marine food web!

For lab volunteer inquiries, contact Meredith Elliott, our Lab Manager, Senior Scientist and ACCESS Program Biologist.

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Grow Shared Knowledge

There are several ways that you can contribute the the vast datasets that our and other scientists need to do really important things like create models that help predict what effects climate change will have on wildlife and ecosystems.  Here are a few ways that you can add your observations of the natural world to shared databases that scientists use to conserve our ecosystems:


A real-time, online checklist program, eBird has revolutionized the way that the birding community reports and accesses information about birds. Launched in 2002 by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society, eBird provides rich data sources for basic information on bird abundance and distribution at a variety of spatial and temporal scales.


From hikers to hunters, birders to beach-combers, the world is filled with naturalists, and many of us record what we find. What if all those observations could be shared online? You might discover someone who finds beautiful wildflowers at your favorite birding spot, or learn about the birds you see on the way to work. If enough people recorded their observations, it would be like a living record of life on Earth that scientists and land managers could use to monitor changes in biodiversity, and that anyone could use to learn more about nature.  That's the vision behind So if you like recording your findings from the outdoors, or if you just like learning about life, join iNaturalist!

Report a Bird Band

Visit USGS's Patuxant Wildlife Research Center Bird Banding Lab web page to report a bird with a dederal band or color marker.  This helps us track movement and survival of bird populations, learn about the health of the environment, and give reccommendations for conservation management.

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