We’re currently giving talks at Universities in UK, Ireland, US, Canada, Malta, Spain and Portugal. Want to know when we’ll be near you? Complete an Expression of Interest form to find out.

  • Overview
  • Objectives
  • Skills you gain
  • Costs to Consider
  • Site Conditions

This expedition is based on Utila island and is aimed at training you to become a PADI Divemaster (DM). You need to be qualified to PADI Rescue Diver and have 40 logged dives before starting on this course. The course involves a combination of dive theory, in water practical sessions, and shadowing instructors teaching PADI Open Water and Advanced Open Water courses. The training costs of the course are included in the expedition, though you will have to purchase the necessary PADI training materials ahead of joining the expedition and pay PADI registration fees after completion. During your expedition you will also have time to complete our Caribbean coral reef ecology course and will learn how to identify most of the coral and fish species encountered in the Caribbean, as well as gain an insight into the marine research being carried out by our team. One of the benefits of Divemaster training with Opwall is that, assuming you perform well on site, we can offer Divemaster positions on our various expeditions around the world in subsequent summers. There is also the option to extend this expedition to 6 weeks and spend the additional time collecting data with our team of scientists on a range of research projects.

Honduras Marine Research Objectives

In the Caribbean, there are a number of core issues that have been affecting the biodiversity of coral reefs, including the mass mortality of keystone sea urchins that have allowed algal colonisation of reef areas, an invasive predator (lionfish) originally from the Indo-Pacific that has spread across the Caribbean, and overfishing of reef fish by local communities. Opwall has two marine research sites in Honduras where these issues and many more are studied: one is on the island reefs of Utila and the second on the coastal barrier reef of Tela. At both sites, teams of Opwall scientists and students collect annual monitoring data to assess temporal patterns in reef community health, alongside novel research to address key conservation priorities and gaps in our current understanding of these fragile ecosystems. Honduras is also home to Opwall’s pioneering efforts to integrate technological solutions into the monitoring and study of coral reefs, including our 3D computer modelling method. Opwall’s team of marine scientists in Honduras helps to support not only international academic research and new method development, but also supports local non-governmental organisations with their efforts to improve marine conservation in Honduras.

  • Gain an internationally recognised professional SCUBA qualification
  • Dive on a range of reefs around Utila island
  • Experience working in a fast paced dive centre, supervising divers and assisting with training courses
  • Complete a week-long training course on Caribbean coral reef ecology
  • Collect ecological survey data on coral reef health and diversity
  • Opwall fee
  • Cost of international flights into and out of San Pedro Sula
  • Cost of internal travel to and from the start and end point of the expedition, plus any hotels you might require. This costs around £225 or $325 on average. Extra nights’ accommodation in San Pedro Sula costs around £49 or $71.
  • Dive equipment rental – £50 or $75 per week for full dive kit. Please note that wetsuits/rash vests cannot be provided – you should bring your own.
  • Park entrance fees – £17 or $25
  • PADI Divemaster crew pack and registration fees
  • Vaccinations and prophylactic medicines – cost can vary depending on your healthcare provider.
  • All prices in GBP or USD unless specified

Most of our volunteers fundraise for their expedition costs. Find out more.

Climate
Our marine sites are hot and usually dry, but with occasional storms.

Fitness level required
Moderate – High. As a Divemaster, a fair level of fitness is key to ensuring divers stay safe in the water. This will naturally improve as the course progresses on your way to becoming a PADI professional.

Creature comforts
Facilities are comfortable but basic. There is phone signal and limited wifi that is often unreliable.

Locations

  • Honduras
  • Utila

Want to get involved with this project?

Preparation

Want to get involved with this project?

   Latest from our blog

  • Honduras – Are we contributing to noise pollution when we dive ...

    Posted on 4th April 2019
    Written by Kieran McCloskey Photos Courtesy of Kieran McCloskey & Dan Exton You would be surprised by how noisy the underwater environment really is. Whale songs and dolphin clicks are well known to the general public, but marine mammals are not the...
    Read more...
  • Honduras – Rebuilding the Caribbean One Sea Urchin at a Time

    Posted on 28th February 2019
    Written by Dr Max Bodmer Photos courtesy of David Exton and Carol Battram Published in The Marine Biologist magazine Since the birth of the package holiday, sea urchins have wreaked havoc with the appendages of holidaymakers. For most people the waters of...
    Read more...
  • Honduras – Sorpresa!

    Posted on 25th January 2019
    Written by and Photos Courtesy of Christina Hunt There are new discoveries to be made every time we go for a snorkel or SCUBA dive. These don’t have to be news-worthy discoveries such as finding a new and previously undescribed species. Personal...
    Read more...
Wallace House, Old Bolingbroke, Spilsby, Lincolnshire PE23 4EX, UK
| +44 (0) 1790 763194 | info@opwall.com