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DARWIN200 in Rio de Janeiro during two-year global voyage and conservation mission aboard tall ship Oosterschelde

DARWIN200, a two-year planetary conservation mission aboard the magnificent tall ship Oosterschelde, will visit Rio de Janeiro between 3rd November – 12th November 2023 for a week of youth conservation leadership programmes and public events.

The historic tall ship will be docked at the quayside by the iconic Museu do Amanhã (Museum of Tomorrow) science museum in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Public Event Schedule in Rio de Janeiro

11th November 2023 – Free Ticketed Public Event Museu do Amanhã
On 11th November in Rio de Janeiro, 18:00-20:00, DARWIN200 will host a public event at Museu do Amanhã with special guest presentations from DARWIN200 Dr Sarah Darwin, , environmentalist and President of the Botanical Gardens of Rio Sérgio Besserman, Prof of Ecology and Director of the Science Council of the Museum of Tomorrow Fábio Scarano and DARWIN200 Project Leader Stewart McPherson.

Tickets are free. Visit the Museum’s website here for more information.

Museum of Tomorrow’s Chief Executive, Bruna Baffa says

“We are living in the Ocean Decade and we still know little about it. Hosting the Darwin200 expedition at the Museum of Tomorrow allows us to put our audience in touch with essential issues such as environmental conservation and to encourage the search for solutions.”

12th November 2023 – Free Online Event Darwin Day
On 12th November the project will celebrate Darwin Day with a supercharged “World’s Most Exciting Classroom” event – a day of free online talks streamed live from DARWIN200 in the Atlantic Rainforest at the Associação Mico-Leão-Dourado. It will be primarily in English, but streamed with Portuguese subtitles.

During the morning events tune in to hear from a host of conservationists including Luis Paulo from the Associação Mico-Leão-Dourado who will talk through their incredible work saving the golden lion tamarin from extinction. Plus each of the 5 Darwin Leaders who will present their project work and screen one of their completed films. Results from the biodiversity transect and coral reef survey will be shared with Q&A throughout.

In the afternoon we will ask the greatest minds in conservation a simple question: “What can we all do to change the world and make a better future for conservation of nature?”

Beaming in to answer that question will be Dame Jane Goodall,  Sylvia Earle, Dr Sarah Darwin, NASA Astronaut Terry W. Virts, National Geographic Photographer Ami Vitale, Philippe Cousteau, ocean conservationist, founder of EarthEcho International and grandson of Jacques Cousteau, and DARWIN200 founder and project leader Stewart McPherson.

Full details at

DARWIN200 in Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro is the fifth of 32 ports to be visited during DARWIN200, a 40,000+ nautical mile voyage and conservation mission. The DARWIN200 Global Voyage is retracing young Charles Darwin’s famous journey on HMS Beagle and aims to change the world for the better by empowering 200 next-gen leaders of conservation.

In each port of the DARWIN200 global voyage, small groups of ‘Darwin Leaders’, selected from around the world for their outstanding achievements in conservation, join the tall ship for a week-long immersive conservation leadership training programme. Two hundred in total will take part over the two-year expedition – hence the project name. Working alongside local conservation experts, each Darwin Leader studies a species of animal, plant or an ecosystem, assesses its population status and how it has changed over the past two centuries, learns about conservation initiatives currently in place to protect it and develops their own ideas on how to better conserve the chosen species in the future.

The intention is that each Darwin Leader will be empowered with new ideas, skills, and experience that will have a positive impact on the work they are already doing in their home countries and inspire their future careers in conservation.

Five Darwin Leaders from France, India, Chile, Venezuela and Netherlands will join the tall ship in Rio de Janeiro. They will be embedded with local conservation organisations and experts to study:

1. Darwin Leader: Juliet de Rozario, France
Project Guyana dolphins of Sepetiba Bay (1.5 to 2 hours south of Rio) with Rodrigo Tardim, ECoMAR – Laboratorio de Ecologia e Conservação Marinha, UFRJ

2. Darwin Leader: Joseph Roy, India
Project: Reintroduction of howler monkeys in Tijuca Forest (right in city centre) with Marcelo Rheingantz, Director of ReFauna and Professor at the Laboratório de Ecologia e Conservação de Populações, Instituto de Biologia – Univ Federal do Rio de Janeiro

3. Darwin Leader: Camila Calderón Quirgas, Chile
Project: Conservation of corals and reef fish of the islands of Rio (offshore) with Aline Aguiar, Project Technical Coordinator, Projeto Ilhas do Rio, Mar Adentro Institute, Rio de Janeiro

4. Darwin Leader: Karen Brewer-Carías, Venezuela
Project: Conservation of golden lion tamarin (2 hours north west of Rio at AMLD in Silva Jardim) with Luis Paulo Marqes Ferraz, Executive Director of Associação Mico-Leão Dourado, Silva Jardim, RJ

5. Darwin Leader: Jessica Tax, Netherlands
Project: Restoration of the Atlantic Rainforest (2 hours north west of Rio at AMLD in Silva Jardim) with Luis Paulo Marqes Ferraz, Executive Director of Associação Mico-Leão Dourado, Silva Jardim, RJ

Joseph Roy is one of the Darwin Leaders taking part in Rio de Janeiro. He is studying for a Master’s in Ecology at the University of Glasgow and The Scottish Centre for Ecology and he says:

I am originally from India and I’m passionate about the biodiversity of my country. During Darwin200 I’ll research the reintroduction of howler monkeys in Tijuca National Park, Brazil. This project excites me as it provides insights for my future work on reintroducing a macaque species in India.

Two of the Darwin Leader projects will take place at the Association of the Golden Lion Tamarin Center (a conservation centre replanting the Atlantic rainforest to expand this habitat). Golden lion tamarin conservation efforts have been successful, growing the population from a one-time low of 200 animals to more than 2,000 today.

Charles Darwin’s great-great-grand-daughter, Dr Sarah Darwin will join DARWIN200 Founder Stewart McPherson and a team of volunteers at the Association of the Golden Lion Tamarin Center, to plant 8,000 native trees at the centre while raising awareness and funds to support further replanting by the Association of the Golden Lion Tamarin. She says:

I am very supportive of this incredible project. Using Charles Darwin’s voyage on HMS Beagle as a framework to highlight environmental change as well as the beauty of nature is a timely and noble ambition. The excellent DARWIN200 team is developing novel methods to find and train two hundred young people to become Darwin Leaders. These young ambassadors will all have the potential and opportunity to become future leaders in the environmental movement. Their knowledge and passion for nature will reach and inspire vast audiences worldwide through their actions, films and social media. The Darwin200 alumnae will form a new international community of young people and a network of support for the future.

Stewart McPherson, DARWIN200 Founder and Project Leader says:

“The public knows it is important to plant trees, but do they understand why? During the week, we will undertake a 100 metre transect recording diversity of birds, mammals, insects, plants, fungi and so on in Primary Atlantic Rainforest (or as close to primary as possible), Secondary Atlantic Rainforest, Severely degraded forest or agriculture land, 10 year old replanted forest, 20 year old replanted forest and 30 to 50 year old replanted forest. This isn’t academic research, but the intention is to visually show high diversity in primary, less in secondary, low in severely degraded forest, then increasing biodiversity in the replanted forest, and help people better understand why planting trees is important and how the reforested areas restore the communities of wildlife


Get Involved in DARWIN200

Sail the ship: The general public can sign up to sail the magnificent tall ship Oosterschelde between ports alongside adventure travellers and environmental researchers, who are tasked with steering, navigating and manning the ropes of the three-masted topsail schooner under the guidance of a professional crew.

See more information on dates, costs and availability at

Oosterschelde Director and Captain Gerben Nab says:

“The Oosterschelde is the largest restored ship in the Netherlands and a monument. To be able to commit myself, my ship and my crew to this great project as captain of such a fantastic ship is a great honour and I hope that many people will follow our journey and that our objectives will be expressed by many”.

Along the way the Oosterschelde crew documents ocean plastics and coral reef health, and undertake surveys of seabirds, whales and dolphins. The data collected, together with the Darwin Leader films, photo essays and research reports are available for the general public to see on the DARWIN200 website along with hundreds of free, online, nature and conservation-related educational resources and weekly interactive ‘nature hour’ sessions beamed live from the ship turning it into the “World’s Most Exciting Classroom!”.


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The DARWIN200 mission is an official contributor to the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development 2021-2030. The Global Voyage carriers The Explorers Club flag #101.

DARWIN200 patrons and supporters include Dame Jane Goodall, Dr Sylvia Earle and Charles Darwin’s great-great-grand-daughter, Dr Sarah Darwin.

DARWIN200’s next stop: Punta del Este, URUGUAY 3 December 2023

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