Jobs in wildlife may have you working directly with wild animals, or your work may involve indirectly working with wildlife. The diversity of jobs and career paths in this field may be as diverse as the species you can work with. In addition, many of these job duties overlap and interconnect. For example, many jobs such as that of a zookeeper, park ranger, and animal control officer involve educating the public about those animals. Land use planning, USDA inspections, and game warden all involve legal work. To help you explore those jobs and career paths, here are some types of jobs that involve wildlife and lists of specific job titles.
The father of conservation Gifford Pinchot defined conservation “as the foresighted utilization, preservation and/or renewal of forests, waters, lands and minerals, for the greatest good of the greatest number for the longest time.” Jobs in conservation may involve working to conserve a specific species or an entire habitat full of plants and animals while balancing the needs and wants of the human species.
Jobs Working With Animals
Jobs working hands on with wild animals for some can involve the day-to-day care of animals for a short time or for the life of that animal. These jobs in wildlife may have you traveling around the country or you may become an active and well-known member of a single community. In a job working with animals, you will work long hours serving the needs of the wildlife including feeding, cleaning (lots of poop scooping), and seeing to the overall welfare of the animals. You will work days, nights, and weekends nursing the sick and injured wildlife back to health, your paycheck will probably not be anything to brag about, and at the end of the day, you will smell much like the animals you cared for. Yet, this job will have you looking forward to your next day at work.
Environmental Education Jobs
Environmental education jobs have you interacting with the public on a daily basis. From preschoolers to adults, the environmental educator can transition from one level to another conveying their message and information. These positions require a vast range of knowledge as you will have to accurately answer questions on the spot. It involves understanding basic teaching methods that engage an audience. Environmental educators also develop programs to enhance the current educational programs and develop new business, as this is a source of funding for many parks and nature centers.
Government Wildlife Jobs
There are many wildlife jobs to be found at the local and federal government level. Cities, counties, states, and the federal government hire people to manage how land, wildlife, and resources are used and protected.
Land Use Planning
Alternative and Renewable Energy
USDA / APHIS Inspector
Oil Spill Response
Parks and Recreation
International Wildlife Jobs
You don’t have to limit your career choices to the U.S. Around the world wildlife in both developed and developing countries need experienced wildlife experts with innovative ideas. In particular, in underdeveloped nations where people need the basics of food and fresh water to survive, protecting the wildlife is not of great importance. Much of the wildlife work in these regions involves helping to provide education for children and successful and sustainable farming practices to farmers. With better education and basic needs met, wildlife and habitat concerns become more important to those living in the region.