Note: All 2016 teams will be working in Andorra instead of France (still in the Pyrenees, but in a location further east). We will be updating this webpage soon to reflect this change in location.
You’ll spend your days in the Haute Garonne region of the French Pyrenees, a landscape dotted with mountains, lakes, caves (some with prehistoric art), and spectacular scenic overlooks. In warmer months, you might see large flocks of sheep grazing in the Alpine pastures kept by their iconic white Pyrenees guard dogs. Overhead some of Europe’s most emblematic eagles and vultures wheel, looking for prey. Other animals that frequent the region include the occasional bear, deer, chamois, marmots, and a variety of birds and butterflies.
Visitors are often drawn to the mid-Pyrenees by the wide range of outdoor activities, such as hiking and kayaking in the summer and cross-country skiing in the winter. The Pyrenees have long been inhabited by humans where some of the world’s oldest known cave art depicts life tens of thousands of years ago. There’s also a wealth of cultural sites to discover, including towns and cathedrals that date back to the Middle Ages.
Reflecting the cultural diversity of the region, the project team includes a Catalan scientist and members of Pays de L’ours, a French organization that seeks to unite local communities and Pyrenean professionals to promote more sustainable development in the region and restore a viable bear population in the Pyrenees. This team will spend some days and evenings with you, sharing their knowledge and interests to provide you with the natural and cultural context of this amazing landscape.