Working4Wildlife: Birds & biodiversity of Hungary

Birds & biodiversity, Hungary: 18 August to 1 September

Your Host Organisation The Barn Owl Foundation (BOF), Hungary is a Non Governmental Organisation established in 1997. The aim of the organisation is to embrace a wide spectrum of nature conservation and related social matters. Apart from the protection of endangered species and their habitats the Foundation is dedicated to tackling sectoral issues such as education, communication and employability challenges in the environmental sector.  The BOF operates in the rural countryside across Hungary. It has 2 members of staff and has a pool of around 40 volunteers from which to draw solid scientific and/or analytical expertise and/or web site experience. One of the strengths of the Foundation is its ability to manage projects in an agile and proactive way. The organisation works closely with National Parks, local authorities, HEIs and other NGO’s both in Hungary and Europe. The rich network provides a robust background to find solutions and answers to various questions. This makes it possible to form teams that can provide specific input into different projects as required. The mobility part of Working4Wildlife is totally funded by ERASMUS+




Looking for an opportunity to combine working for wildlife and travel to the EU?   Want to spend some focused time with wildlife and like minded people?  We will add skills training and recognition into that package for you. By being on an Ambios Ltd vocational training course, Erasmus can then fund your mobility.

Our Working4Wildlife practical course consists of:

  • 30-hour online wildlife identification course
  • 2-week European mobility (funded by Erasmus+)
  • Private facebook Q&A group including guest employers
  • E-badge, Europass and Employer recognition of your skills
  • Post-mobility networking/employer event

We have a network of European nature conservation training partners ready for you to choose the 2-week work-place experience that suits your needs.  Different countries offer different opportunities (see below).  

These immersive experiences will support your personal development and help your path into nature conservation or other career.

You have to be accepted onto a vocational course with Ambios (for which there is a separate fee) to be able to go on the field trip. Erasmus+ supports all the costs of your mobility. See Skills Training and Recognition below.

Come and help us make a difference

Participant feedback

Joe said “We participated in surveys of Scops Owls, and an indicator species survey of Barred Warbler, Woodlark, Hoopoe, and Red-backed Shrike, We observed ringing of passerines and of Barn Owls. We visited a number of habitats in Western Hungary, including heathland, grassland, timber plantations, ancient woodland and wetland habitats.   I improved my knowledge of bird surveying techniques, particularly the use of recorded bird song and calls in such work along with my knowledge of bird song.” Rosie said “During the build up to Hungary, I was a nervous wreck. I was going away to a new country, with people with far more experience in conservation and natural sciences than myself. I’m a creative – what was I thinking doing something like this? All this worry was for nothing in the end, as those two weeks were beyond brilliant.”   You can read more in Rosie’s wonderful blog here

Task During Mobility

You will be working as part of a small team of 6 alongside both the Barn Owl Foundation and Ambios Ltd UK staff.  Previous trainees have assisted with carrying out some or all of the following tasks: Barn Owls surveys including nest checks and chick ringing, night-time owl census, monitoring road kills and collecting owl carcasses for analysis, inputting data into a computer, collecting and analysing owl pellets, participating in activities of environmental education and publicity.  New projects include invertebrate sampling, baseline bird surveys of the various habitats and bat transect surveys to record species presence within the landscape as well as camera trapping mammal surveys.

2020 dates and costs

Our vocational training Working4Wildlife on-line course which includes modules on bird identification, bird handling (ringing) and delivering live interpretation will begin on 23 March 2020 (and you can take up to 1 year to complete).  The cost of the course is £495. Being registered on our Working4Wildlife vocational training on-line course means Erasmus+ can fund the following cohort to the Barn Owl Foundation, Hungary accompanied by Ambios Ltd staff

6 places available: 18 August to 1 September.  Final deadline for applications is: 12noon Monday 13th April 2020.  Early applications will be given preference, interviewed and potentially offered places before this date.  

Costs of the UK elements

The costs include:

  • Access to our 30-hour on-line vocational learning materials
  • Support and vocational assessment while achieving your course*
  • Access to our Private Facebook Q&A Group with guest employers
  • E-badge employer recognition

*you have 1 year to complete the on-line learning Erasmus+ pays for:

  • All transport (train/bus or flights) and onward travel to and from UK to EU host
  • Personal travel insurance for the EU mobility
  • All food and accommodation with your host
  • Support while on mobility

The above costs DO NOT include:

  • Travel to/from UK your point of departure from UK.
  • Personal spending money whilst in country

Travel and Insurance

We will investigate overland travel to Budapest.  We understand that some participants may wish to fly due to health or welfare needs, in which case please let us know and we will look into flights. However we travel, we will begin to offset the impacts via our tree planting scheme at Lower Sharpham Farm. Successful applicants will be awarded an Erasmus+ financial contribution towards personal insurance. This must be purchased before the field trip and a copy of the insurance certificate supplied to Ambios Ltd prior to your departure.

To find out more about the mobilities, please take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions page

Food and accommodation

Accommodation (Bagoly House – Bagoly is the Hungarian for Owl!) is in and around a small rural cottage with basic yet comfortable shared sleeping accommodation with communal shower room and cooking facilities.  Caravan or tented accommodation within the ground of the rural cottage may also be used if the weather conditions are faviourable.  The unique rural and remote location of the accommodation provides us with an ideal place from which to explore the surrounding countryside.  

Bagoly House Accommodation

Indicative content

Over the duration of the 2-week work based training with the Barn Owl Foundation, Hungary, the following areas of learning will be covered.

  • Orientation: country, district, town, village, garden and living space
  • Bird identification skills practice and theory
  • Identification of bird songs – the dawn chorus
  • Feather identification
  • Bird taxonomy
  • Raptor surveys: e.g. White-tailed eagle, Marsh harrier, Buzzard, Hobby, Honey buzzard, Sparrowhawk
  • Owls and pellets: Barn Owl, Little Owl, Scops Owl, Tawny Owl, Pigmy Owl (if we are lucky!)
  • Water Fowl: cormorant, egret, grebe, ducks, herons and others
  • Emblematic bird species in Central Europe and their conservation (LIFE projects of great bustards, imperial eagles, red-footed falcon, saker falcon)
  • Birds as indicators of ecosystem health
  • Nest box survey
  • New European Breeding Bird Atlas (EBBA-2), Mapping bird scheme
  • Bird ringing
  • Public engagement


Kit list: We recommend you bring the following items:

We recommend you bring the following items:

  • Head torchand spare batteries
  • Good waterproof coat and trousers– please be aware that shorts are not a great idea for fieldwork and that you should consider bringing more than one pair of long trousers!
  • Sturdy walking boots
  • Slippers for around the accommodation
  • Wash kit
  • Personal medication
  • Water bottle
  • Plastic box for lunchtime food
  • Laptop or tablet (optional)
  • Mobile telephoneand charger
  • Adaptor from EU to UK electrics
  • Binoculars!
  • Pen, pencil and note book
  • Bird field guide – we recommend the Collins bird guide
  • Spending money
  • Camera (optional), with charger leads
  • Passport
  • EHIC card
  • Travel insurance documents
  • Sun cream, Sun hat, sun glasses
  • Mosquito repellent, bite and sting cream (just in case) and consider a head net or similar.

No need to bring:

  • Travellers pocket guide to Hungary – we have a dozen
  • Towels!



Before your trip we’ll have a Skype conference meeting where you can:

  • Meet your fellow participants
  • Hear more about your host organisation and logistics
  • Discuss the kit list
  • Be introduced to your on-line learning environment
  • See how the paperwork bit works
  • Hear about the post-mobility Employers’ knowledge cafe
  • Understand how our system of support works

Post Mobility

Following your mobilities you’ll receive recognition from your hosts and a Europass.  Once you’ve completed the on-line learning you’ll receive further recognition via an e-badge. You’ll also be invited to a final course get together in October at our farm in South Devon. You can take up to 1 year from your date of registration to complete the on-line course.

How to Apply

To apply for the Working4Wildlife 2 week course, please fill in the application form. The deadline for applications is 12 noon, Monday 2nd March. Preference will be given to early applications. 


Ambios Ltd are committed to protecting your personal data and working in accordance with all relevant data protection legislation. Will will never sell your data to anyone. Your data will be used for contacting you about this course and may be used to make you aware of other similar offers. You can opt out at any time via an email to with ‘Opt Out’ in the subject line.