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Caring for Islands

Voluntary Caretakers

WILDCARE members voluntarily assist the Parks and Wildlife Service on Maatsuyker Island (south of Tasmania) Deal Island (Bass Strait) and Schouten Island (East Coast) as Island Caretakers. WILDCARE members have provided this assistance since the lighthouse islands were handed to the Parks and Wildlife Service in around 1995. Caretaking "shifts" range from a couple of weeks (on Schouten Island) to three or four months in duration, during which time the volunteers are self-sufficient, but in regular contact with Rangers.

Special training in weather reporting is provided for Caretakers on Maatsuyker Island, as the volunteers provide 3-hourly weather reports to the Bureau of Meteorology. The Bureau pays a small stipend for this work.

Deal Island Caretakers carry out quite a bit of visitor information and assistance work as the island is a popular stop-over for cruising yachts and kyakers playing around in Bass Strait or crossing between Victoria and Tasmania. There is also a small museum on the island.

Schouten Island Caretakers provide information and advice services to boating visitors.

Caretakers on Maatsuyker Island and Deal Island carry out a variety of maintenance work on the houses, lighthouses and other buildings. Caretakers on Schouten Island interact with boating visitors and undertake activities such as weeding.

The Parks and Wildlife Service has a number of requirements, relating to skills and experience, that are considered by them when selecting Island Caretakers.

PWS is now calling for applications for the Maatsuyker Island Volunteer Caretaker and Weather Observer Program 2013. Applicants need to be able to volunteer for 6 months or longer.  

Please note: each person applying needs to submit a separate application and provide 2 referees.
More information and Application Form in the Information Pack and Application Form.
Wildcare Friends of Islands groups
WILDCARE's Friends of Maatsuyker Island, Friends of Deal Island, Friends of Tasman Island, Friends of Maria Island, Friends of Snake Island, and Friends of Tamar Island, in cooperation with the Rangers, undertake a variety of on-ground management projects at various times of the year. The Friends groups also raise funds through grants, donations, sponsorship, and sales of merchandise, to support management of the islands. Friends of Tamar Island also run the Wetlands Visitor Centre 364 days per year.

To register your interest in becoming a member of one of our island Friends groups join WILDCARE Inc, and register for the island of your choice (or all of them). You will then receive information about volunteer projects and programs on the islands. 

If you are already a member of WILDCARE, simply contact the WILDCARE Office ( or phone 03 6233 2852) to alter your membership details to include the island of your choice. Alternatively, you can change your details on-line.

Further information

Friends of Deal Island

Deal Island Caretaker Program - email

Schouten Island Caretaker Program - PWS Northern Regional Office (as above)

Friends of Maatsuyker Island

Maatsuyker Island Caretaker Program - email PWS Volunteering South

Friends of Maria Island

Friends of Snake Island

Tamar Island Wetland Volunteers

Island information  


Island information

Tasmania has hundreds of islands around its shores, large and small. For information on where they are, access conditions and other visitor information check out the Wildcare Island Share website  



Have you ever wanted to spend a few months alone on an island, spend time getting to know a piece of wilderness better, take part in protecting rare wildlife in the wild, feel the joy of caring for and releasing a wild animal or bird or head to the back country and do some real work?

WILDCARE Inc, in cooperation with our government partners, undertakes a number of large scale, ongoing, annual projects and programs. Information about these programs can be found below. Special projects and programs may require specialist skills and often ask for extended commitments, but they are some of the most intriguing and exciting volunteer projects around.

 See program contact details above for more information.

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