Volunteer: Snowy Plover Docent

A female snowy plover on the left with a snowy plover chick on the right.


Assist park management in balancing wildlife protection and visitor recreation, specifically by helping to protect threatened Western Snowy Plovers from disturbance during the nesting season and creating awareness among park visitors on the beach and at trailheads.


  • Collaboratively or independently staff a trailhead information table at North Beach, Kehoe Beach, Limantour Beach, or Abbott’s Lagoon.
  • Rove the beach within the plover breeding habitat independently or with another docent for the purpose of making contacts with visitors
  • Collect data in the field, to help inform biologists on snowy plover and visitor activity
  • Staff a snowy plover viewing area with a spotting scope or rove the beach at Abbott’s Lagoon with the Snowy Plover Docent Program Manager or Plover Monitoring Biologists
  • Educate visitors about the natural history, plight, and protection of the snowy plovers
  • Inform dog owners about beach restrictions and provide information on areas open to dogs, when necessary
  • Use a two-way radio to communicate with the Snowy Plover Docent Program Manager and law-enforcement rangers when necessary
  • Provide general park information and assistance to visitors
  • Use interpretive materials to help communicate information
  • Professionally represent the National Park Service by wearing an identifying docent vest and interact with visitors in a friendly, courteous, tactful, and helpful manner

Knowledge/Skills/Experience Desired

Snowy Plover Docents must possess very good oral communication skills with a diversity of people, be able to work independently, and be non-confrontational. Docents must also be able to spend a majority of the time standing, walking, and/or hiking; tolerate wind, fog, cold, and blowing sand; and be comfortable around people and dogs . Knowledge of the park and teaching experience is helpful.

Schedule and Time Commitment

Workdays are scheduled for seven hours from 10 am until 5 pm. Docents are expected to work at least four weekend days between Memorial Day and Labor Day.


Training is scheduled for Saturday, May 4, 2024, from 10 am to 5 pm at the Red Barn Classroom in Bear Valley, in addition to on-the-job training. No prior bird knowledge is necessary.

Benefits to the Volunteer

Snowy Plover Docents gain personal enrichment and experience working in a national park setting as well as training and education about the snowy plovers and related park resources. Docents enjoy the satisfaction in helping to protect threatened nesting Western Snowy Plovers in addition to communicating with and helping park visitors while representing the National Park Service.

Group Type

Individuals are encouraged to participate.

Minimum Age

Minimum age is 18.


Housing and camping/RV sites are unavailable.

Application and Contact Information

No application is required but all new docents must attend the training day on Saturday, May 4. For more information or to register for this training, contact Fiona O'Kelly at 415-464-5147 or by email.

Last updated: March 21, 2024

Park footer

Contact Info

Mailing Address:

1 Bear Valley Road
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956


This number will initially be answered by an automated attendant, from which one can opt to access a name directory, listen to recorded information about the park (e.g., directions to the park; visitor center hours of operation; fire danger information; wildlife updates; ranger-led programs; seasonal events; etc.), or speak with a ranger. Please note that if you are calling between 4:30 pm and 10 am, park staff may not be available to answer your call.

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