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What kind of careers are there in the field of ecology?

Preferably related to conservation. #biology #environmental-science #ecology #conservation #conservation-biology

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Anne’s Answer

Ecology is a broad field. You can focus on animals, plants, soils, and even microbial ecology at the microscopic level. Ecology covers all aspects of natural environments. The US government hires ecologists. Go to USAjobs and see if you can find a job description. That will give you an idea of what the job requires. You can also google "ecology jobs" and read all the different job descriptions that come up. That should give you a good idea of career directions.

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Priscilla’s Answer

Ecologists work both indoors and outdoors. For instance, outdoors they may oversee construction at sites to ensure no environmental impacts occur, conduct risk assessment, or restore habitat by planting vegetation at a restoration site. Indoors they may produce a report regarding this work in the field.

Indoor work includes writing reports, performing ecological evaluations, and analyzing technical data.

Outdoor work, or fieldwork may depend on the geographical location, the climate and the season. Specifically, ecologists may conduct vegetative monitoring in the field only in the spring, summer or fall months. In contrast, an ecologist may respond to emergencies in any location, in any season, such as rushing to an oil spill site, or trapping wild animals for rehabilitation. Outdoor venues include forestry, farming, marine/freshwater, wetlands, grasslands, deserts, chapparel, and mountains.

An ecologist or environmental scientist can work for a consulting firm, for a nonprofit agency, or for the government. Working as an environmental scientist at a consulting firm, ecologists perform tasks like restoring habitat, tracking animals, and running predictive models.

Private consultanting firms hire ecologists to prepare an environmental assessment for major construction projects.

Ecologists work for non-profit organizations, such as a conservation groups, for environmental stewardship and protection. Ecologists focus on habitat restoration and wildlife tracking and monitoring.

Federal, state and local governments hire ecologists too. At the federal and state level, they are involved in policymaking and decision-making. At the local level, such as counties, cities, and townships, they may represent an administrative area as a land manager.

Priscilla recommends the following next steps:

There are so many jobs in the growing fields of ecology, environmental science, and sustainability. Take a look at your local colleges and see what programs are listed in these fields. Search for keywords: ecology, environmental science and sustainability.
Volunteer for groups on campus or in your community that work with ecology. You can include your volunteer work on your college application, or if you're in college now, on your resume.
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