Become a LightHawk Pilot

LightHawk provides opportunities for 1000 hour-PIC qualified pilots to volunteer their time and aircraft to experience a different, adventurous kind of flying.

LightHawk flies for conservation across America. Our flights are focused on preserving lands, oceans and coastlines, river systems and wildlife. To see our work in your area, visit our Project Map. We seek pilots with access to aircraft in all of our project areas.

Your missions may include collecting data or imagery, informing journalists, educating decision makers, or transporting endangered animals. Your gift of flight will help scientists, decision-makers and other changer makers, community leaders, journalists, and photographers..

LightHawk flights serve many purposes. We have need for pilots flying a variety of planes from single-engine 1-to-4 seaters for photography and aerial tours, to turboprops and jets for wildlife transport.  

“Working with LightHawk and their partners has enriched my flying experience ten fold and is very addictive. The more I fly, the more I want to fly for causes and issues in which I believe strongly.”
Bill Rush, volunteer pilot (Boulder Creek, CA)

Our community of 300 pilots is tight knit and active at regional meets and at our annual Fly-In celebration. Pilots develop great relationships with our partners and engage with conservation projects beyond the flight. Take Dave Riffle, a Volunteer Pilot who flew lynx tracking missions in the Pacific Northwest with our partner, Southern Interior Land Trust. They invited him to do on-the-ground fieldwork collaring new lynx!

Volunteers Needed, Join Us!


Interested? Fill out the form below and visit our Application Process page to discover what happens next in the adventure of becoming a LightHawk pilot.