Have you ever wondered what it would be like to become a wildlife biologist? Well there are several key factors that may add to your ideas about wildlife biology as an occupation. To explain further, there are several jobs, and/or responsibilities that are to be carried out on a daily basis. To add, there are several educational requirements and degrees that are essential for receiving a job as a wildlife biologist. Certification and salary may also play an important role in the process of becoming a wildlife biologist. Current research and the future of this occupation may determine what area you are interested in, and where you
may end up if joining this occupation.
Wildlife biology consists of many tasks that are to be carried out on a daily basis. First of all, their job is to study and react to the daily occurrences of the wildlife. This may include focusing on wildlife evolution, adaptation, and/or reproducing. To add, their job is to observe all animals that live in a natural habitat around a specific area. Also, wildlife biologists are required to monitor the population of the wildlife species (Showalter 2010, 1
). Then, they have to work with landowners, in order to research and study the animals in the area (Anders 2010, 1
). Some wildlife biologists also may produce experiments on the species and effects nature can have on some of the species in the area (Back 2010, 2
). Wildlife biologists also collect data, facts, and figures about the wildlife and analyze them on a daily basis (Pandey 2010, 4
Degrees that are needed are: a bachelors degree in wildlife, a masters degree for research, and a doctorate (Back 2010, 1
). Wild life biologists are also required to be deeply familiar with certain types of technology. For example, telemetry equipment is essential. Also, some wildlife biologists have pilot licences
for surveying areas of wildlife (Showalter 2010, 2
). Knowledge on subjects that is essential includes, the federal and state permitting process, fire prevention, weed control, and necessary information on plants and animals (Anders 2010,2
). In order to be considered an assistant to the non research professors in wildlife biology, one must receive the minimum graduate degree. In order to complete the basics, and manangment
of products, a masters degree in science is essential. To become a teacher and complete independent research projects, a Ph.D is needed (Pandey 2010, 2
Several points play a factor in the certification of a wildlife biologist. All who pass the certification of this occupation must complete five years of fulfilling experience, and a bachelors degree (Anonymous A, 1
). In order to apply for this occupation, additional education is required. For example, after maintaining the five years of education, a masters and/or Ph.D is essential. An AWB or an Associate Wildlife Biologist certification is offered to the ones who complete the required five years of education. The AWB certification is available for up to ten years (Anonymous A, 2
The organization that certifies one
would be the Wildlife Society. In order to achieve the five years of experience, volunteer time towards the job is acceptable. The certification and experience is reviewed by the review board to see if the candidate is legitimate for the job (Anonymous A, 4
). The certification fee would end up around twenty dollars (Anonymous B, 2
).There are also several costs to complete the degrees required for this occupation. For example, the cost per year for a bachelors degree at a private school is around 25,000 dollars; around 6,000 dollars at a public school (Roe 2010, 1
). For PHD the cost per term for a resident is around 7,000 for non residents it would be around 11,000 dollars (Anonymous C 2010, 1
). To end, the cost for a masters degree is from 15,000 to 20,000 dollars (Anonymous D 2010, 1
As one might expected that wildlife biologists salary would be high, it is in fact low. Just like any other job, rookies get payed less than full fledged
professionals would. Also, many wildlife biologists become teachers to teach the profession that they cherish. The starting salary of this occupation would be 60,000 dollars per year for a rookie. As the so called rookies were to progress, they may end up at around 71,000 dollars a year. At the same time, the full fledged.
Professionals would be at around 110,000 dollars per year, not including the outside jobs such as, teaching at high schools, and colleges. Wildlife biologists may also increase their salary and yearly pay by becoming writers and conducting experiments with their former researchers (Pandey 2010, 3
). Kimberly Back stated, "According to 2010 data from indeed.com, the average salary of a wildlife biologist is 72,000 dollars".
The future of this occupation may be a huge change, as shown in a few studies. The studies that were to be taken involved several key wildlife biologists that can impact the future of wildlife biology (Kubik 2009, 2
). The purpose of this study was to see how many trends there were to impact the future, and how many competencies there where to also impact the year of 2025 ( Kubik 2009, 1
). During the experiment, over 11,000 results were taken in determine the future (Kubik 2009, 2
). The results came back to be, fifty key trends, and 39 major competencies. The most important competency for wildlife biologists in the future was rapid and effective learning. The other most important one for wildlife biologists was the effect that digital technologies would have on experiments and daily evaluations. Other important competencies were, partnering with coworkers, customers, and stakeholders. Also, creating and developing new found knowledge (Kubik 2009, 3
For a few years now, GPS, a way of tracking animals in a habitat, has been taken advantage of. The tracking devices are responsible for watching and observing the daily actions and responses that a specific species take part of. The data taken back from the tracking devices, can be used to research and study the habitat that surrounds the specific species that is being tracked. In order to carry out this research and to complete the data, a level of expertise is needed, in the biologists that are responsible for the data. Several software products play a role in the success of the GPS and/or tracking systems (Urbano 2010, 4
). The software that is needed, is a modular software architecture that contains a large database in the center (Urbano 2010, 5
Another current research topic is overgrazing
. In North america and Europe, overpopulating of specific species, has lead to overgrazing in those areas. Overgrazing is defined as a time when populations cannot control the amounts of organisms in their habitat
(Mysterud 2006, 1
). An issue that is considered during overgrazing is the space provided to the animals in the habitat. Overgrazing is also dependent on the tolerance of the herbivore or species in the area (Mysterud 2006, 3
). Overall, overgrazing depends on the amount of plants in the area. When herbivores increase, plants begin to decrease. When plants decrease, herbivores begin to decrease. The cycle goes on forever until a single population involved dies out (Mysterud 2006, 2
As you can see, there are many key parts to the occupation of a wildlife biologist. Such as, what is committed to on a daily basis. Also, how to prepare/certify, where to certify/the cost to certify, the salary expected, and the future of the occupation. To end, the current research/innovations of the job were discussed. There are several positives of this job. For example, the experience taken back, the pay, and the knowledge gained while preparing and completing this job. At the same time, there are some negatives of this job. For example, the daily demand that this job requires, the degrees and certifications that are required for this job, and the weekly projects and/or experiments that need to be completed. In conclusion, not only are there several positives and negatives of this occupation, there are also several essential parts of receiving and maintaining a job as a widlife biologist.
For several reasons, wildlife biology is a perfect occupation for me. For example, this job is mainly done on the road. I love being out in the wild and in nature. I love being with animals and plants, in result of natures beauty. Also, because of the pay. If I were to enroll myself as a wildlife biologist and pursue this career until I retire, I could easily be making around 100,000 dollars per year. In my eyes the pay is perfect for my life style. The last reason to why this job would fit me is because of the variety of responsibilities. For example, one day I could be observing the wild. Then the next day I could be in the lab conducting experiments. This variety would keep the job from becoming boring and uninteresting. As you can see, this job is perfct for me.