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Marsh Mucker

Job Description

Marsh Muckers are teenagers, age 14 to 18, who have a variety of duties at the Anita C. Leight Estuary Center. The first and foremost duty is animal care. These volunteers work on a biweekly schedule in pairs and are needed year round. This position provides a chance for younger volunteers to become involved with the community in a capacity that benefits both the teenager and the Center. This opportunity encourages the development of responsibility, job experience and life skills.

Volunteer Commitment

Volunteers work a set shift of every other Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. or from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. We also have substitute Marsh Muckers. (Total volunteer commitment is approximately 6 hours a month.) These positions are limited and quite competitive.

Minimum Qualifications

  • teenagers age 14 and older
  • must be willing to get wet, dirty, and learn new things
  • ability to lift objects over your head
  • willingness to work with all types of animals
  • requires positive public interaction, including greeting and educating visitors
  • requires some agility
  • younger volunteers will generally work with an older, more experienced Marsh Mucker or they may begin in a substitute position.


Sample Tasks

  • clean animal cages (terrestrial & aquatic)
  • feed animals, including occasionally collect food from outside
  • keep animal records
  • regular animal handling
  • update and educate yourself on the animals in captivity at ACLEC
  • collect materials outside for Naturalist
  • assist in program set up and break down
  • assist with programs
  • prepare program materials for Naturalist
  • miscellaneous duties if time permits, example clean canoes and life jackets


Training & Benefits

No prior experience is necessary as volunteers will be provided with all training and necessary equipment. Supplemental training will also be given at different intervals to increase general knowledge of our site and overall animal knowledge. There are many benefits to becoming an *active volunteer at the Anita C. Leight Estuary Center, including seasonal volunteer appreciation trips, the annual volunteer dinner, skill and resume development, meeting new people, and lets not forget, spending time in a natural place (to mention just a few). *Please note: Active volunteer status is reached when you volunteer at least 20 hours a year.

How to Become a Volunteer

First, fill out a volunteer interest form and return it to the Anita C. Leight Estuary Center located at 700 Otter Point Road, Abingdon, MD 21009 or by fax at 410-612-0819. Second, you will be contacted to set up an interview by the Volunteer Coordinator.  The interview is designed to help determine which volunteer opportunities will best suit both your needs and the current openings at the Estuary Center. Please remember the needs of our volunteer programs change so we may not always have openings in all program areas.



Monday thru Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, 12:00 noon to 5:00 p.m.



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OPCA is a non-profit organization
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Anita C. Leight Estuary Center / 700 Otter Point Road, Abingdon MD 21009 / 410-612-1688