Nadja Santer

"They have their heart on the right place and are trying very hard through Kanahau to make Utila a better place for all the species of the island"

Nadja Santer

Nationality: Austrian

Age: 29 years old

University of Vienna:
Behaviour, Neurology and Cognition“ with focus on Behaviour

Master Thesis “Correlation between insect abundance and bat activity“,

University of Innsbruck:
Bachelor Study “Biology“ with the focus on Zoology

Placement: Assistant in the Cataloguing of the Bats from Utila

Time length: 6 weeks 2013

Testimonial
Hi, my Name is Nadja, I’m 29 and I’m living in Austria. I studied biology in Vienna and that’s how I heard about Kanahau. They asked for volunteers amongst others for helping with their study to catalogue the bat species of the island. Maybe you should know that my field of specialty is bats and that I work for an organisation in Austria called the KFFÖ, (www.fledermausschutz.at the Austrian Coordination Centre for Bat Conservation and Research) where I take care of injured and orphaned bats. So you see, it was absolutely clear that I had to go there.

When I arrived at Utila with the ferry Andrea and Steve were already waiting to welcome me. From the first moment I had the feeling that both of them are very special people and during my 6-week stay they absolutely ensured me about that. They have their heart on the right place and are trying very hard through Kanahau to make Utila a better place for all the species of the island. We’re living on different continents but I know that I found friends for life!

I stayed on Utila during the rainy season, thus unfortunately we couldn’t do bat mist-netting as often as we wanted. But when we put up the nets it was just awesome!!! There was so much bat traffic at most sites that we really had a lot of work getting them all out. One of my favorite days with Kanahau was the day when we visited the bat cave. It’s hot and humid inside, there’s bat poo EVERYWHERE but there are hundreds and hundreds of bats flying around you – for a batologist that’s just heaven on earth!!!

As the island is popular for cheap diving there are a lot of tourists from all over the world to meet and to party with in one of the numerous bars. You should definitely go for a beer to „Treetanic“ and „Skid Row“. And when you feel in the mood for dancing nearly everybody meets at „Tranquila“. You will geht the best coffee on the island at „Rio Coco’s“ and you also have at least to try once (I’m sure you will go there again!) the cinnamon buns from „Café Rosa de Oro“.