Zoologists and Wildlife Biologists

Description

Study the origins, behavior, diseases, genetics, and life processes of animals and wildlife. May specialize in wildlife research and management. May collect and analyze biological data to determine the environmental effects of present and potential use of land and water habitats.

Tasks

  • Study animals in their natural habitats, assessing effects of environment and industry on animals, interpreting findings and recommending alternative operating conditions for industry.
  • Inventory or estimate plant and wildlife populations.
  • Organize and conduct experimental studies with live animals in controlled or natural surroundings.
  • Make recommendations on management systems and planning for wildlife populations and habitat, consulting with stakeholders and the public at large to explore options.
  • Disseminate information by writing reports and scientific papers or journal articles, and by making presentations and giving talks for schools, clubs, interest groups and park interpretive programs.
  • Study characteristics of animals such as origin, interrelationships, classification, life histories and diseases, development, genetics, and distribution.
  • Inform and respond to public regarding wildlife and conservation issues, such as plant identification, hunting ordinances, and nuisance wildlife.
  • Oversee the care and distribution of zoo animals, working with curators and zoo directors to determine the best way to contain animals, maintain their habitats and manage facilities.
  • Coordinate preventive programs to control the outbreak of wildlife diseases.
  • Analyze characteristics of animals to identify and classify them.
  • Prepare collections of preserved specimens or microscopic slides for species identification and study of development or disease.
  • Perform administrative duties such as fundraising, public relations, budgeting, and supervision of zoo staff.
  • Collect and dissect animal specimens and examine specimens under microscope.
  • Check for, and ensure compliance with, environmental laws and notify law enforcement when violations are identified.
  • Raise specimens for study and observation or for use in experiments.

Skills

Equipment Selection
Determining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
Installation
Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.
Equipment Maintenance
Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
Repairing
Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.

Abilities

Explosive Strength
The ability to use short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
Dynamic Flexibility
The ability to quickly and repeatedly bend, stretch, twist, or reach out with your body, arms, and/or legs.

Interests

Investigative
Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Realistic
Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
Conventional
Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Enterprising
Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
Artistic
Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
Social
Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

Work Style

Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Analytical Thinking
Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Adaptability/Flexibility
Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Stress Tolerance
Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Self Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Initiative
Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Concern for Others
Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.

Work Values

Achievement
Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Recognition
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.
Working Conditions
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Independence
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Relationships
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Support
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.

Lay Titles

Animal Behaviorist
Animal Biologist
Aquatic Biologist
Conservation Resources Management Biologist
Dolphin Researcher
Ecologist
Entomologist
Environmental Consultant
Environmental Specialist
Field Naturalist
Fish and Wildlife Biologist
Fish Conservationist
Fish Culturist
Fish Technologist
Fisheries Biologist
Fisheries Management Biologist
Fishery Biologist
Genetic Scientist
Herpetologist
Ichthyologist
Lepidopterist
Limnologist
Mammalogist
Marine Biologist
Marine Scientist
Migratory Game Bird Biologist
Naturalist
Nematologist
Ornithologist
Protozoologist
Wildlife Biologist
Wildlife Conservationist
Wildlife Manager
Wildlife Technician
Zoologist

National Wages and Employment Info

Median Wages (2008):
$27.74 hourly, $57,710 annual.
Employment (2008):
18,650 employees