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Job opportunities and Career in Wildlife Conservation

by Vijay Garg
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Wildlife Conservation is the practice of protecting animal species and their habitats. It is the well-planned practice of governmental bodies for ensuring the protection for wild plants species, animals and their habitats. It is needed because many of the wildlife species are in endangered category; they are going to be extinct soon if we don’t protect them. As nature requires different species to stay connected by means of various food webs which means the extinction of one particular species might influence one or more other species. Also, saving many wild plants which are also listed in the endangered category might help us to use the various types of genetic materials which could be critical to the modification of crops which we are still using. We should maintain biodiversity and ecosystems just for wild plants which cater to our needs in making traditional medicine and enriching the pharmaceutical industry.
Career Options in Wildlife Conservation
Nowadays, efforts for wildlife conservation are generating many career opportunities in this sector, so the interested candidates who are willing to pursue their career in the wildlife have a great chance to get the desired job in this sector as there are many career options. Some of the popular careers in the wildlife are discussed below.
Wildlife Biologist: They study the lives and behaviour of animals as well as genetic origins and life processes of animals. Wildlife biologists monitor plant and animal habitats to determine various environmental and population changes which occurred and develop alternative solutions for the restoration of injured or lost resources and habitat. They do both work; field as well as laboratory. They collect and analyze biological data to determine the environmental effects of the present like pollution emitted from industries and potential use of land and water habitats and recommend alternative operating conditions for industries. Wildlife biologists organize and conduct experimental studies with live animals in controlled or natural surroundings. They do the study of characteristics of animals, such as origin, interrelationships, classification, life histories and diseases, development, genetics, and distribution; after that, they coordinate preventive programs to control the outbreak of wildlife diseases. Besides this, they analyze characteristics of animals to identify and classify them and examine the characteristics or behaviour of living organisms. Sometimes they also have to perform administrative duties such as fundraising, public relations, budgeting, and supervision of zoo staff. To become a wildlife biologist a bachelor’s degree in wildlife biology or related field for entry-level jobs; master’s degree or PhD is required for upper-level positions. The average annual pay of wildlife biologist in India is approximately Rs.4,50,000.
Wildlife Manager: Wildlife Managers are the professionals who keep an eye on the animals live in the forest or park and ensure that wild animals including aquatics maintain healthy population size. They supervise hunting on the land, keep track of the animal populations housed on these lands, and ensure that the habitat is suitable for the wildlife population. They also make sure that numbers of animals don’t get too large or rare, also ensure that endangered species number is growing or not and when an animal is threatened, they work to preserve their habitat or food supply. Wildlife managers take all the necessary steps to keep animal populations well-maintained. Also, make sure that hunting is conducted in the healthiest way in terms of the animal’s population. Sometimes when animals get hurt or sick, they often turn aggressive, and at that time they have to be prepared to deal with such situations. They also monitor and documents animal behaviour for example reproduction, eating or migratory patterns. A bachelor’s degree in wildlife management or a related field is needed to become a wildlife manager. The annual average salary of a wildlife manager in India is around Rs.5,00,000.
Wildlife Technician: The Wildlife technician or technologist provides support and service to the scientists working in wildlife management and conservation. The main role of wildlife technician consists of collecting and analyzing samples, operating and maintaining laboratory field equipment, inputting and managing data, and preparing reports of findings. Wildlife technicians do whatever it takes to help wildlife biologists and conservation scientists. Technicians help them gather data and carry out their plans. Natural resource companies, environmental consulting firms and government agencies employ wildlife technicians. These technicians survey wildlife areas by land, sea and air to compile data and inspect wildlife habitats. They also count members of wildlife communities, compile the accurate data and report their observations. They work with mapping and GPS equipment to monitor and track animals. Depending on the work, wildlife technicians work in laboratories as well as in the field. To become a wildlife technician, an associate’s degree in wildlife management or similar field is typically required. A wildlife technician can earn up to Rs.3,00,000 annually at the starting stage of his career.
Wildlife Inspector: Wildlife Inspector takes care of the import and export of live animals and goods for signs of illegal trafficking. Wildlife inspectors clear legal imports and exports and seize shipments that violate the law and regulations. Wildlife officers are law officers, granted with full police powers, whose positions revolve around enforcing rules and regulations regarding wildlife. Important skills required for wildlife officers include firearm handling and maintenance as well as experience with modes of transportation such as cars and boats and have an understanding of fish and wildlife management. A bachelor’s degree in natural science, criminal justice or related field will be preferred if you want to become a wildlife inspector. The annual salary of a wildlife inspector is around Rs.3,50,000.
Zookeeper: Zookeepers are responsible for caring wild animals in zoos and animal parks. Their job is to feed the animals, clean their living spaces, and work to keep them healthy. Zookeepers need to watch and listen carefully to notice any changes in the behaviour of animals and also they prepare balanced diets for the animals. They spend so much time with the animals; therefore, they can provide managers with valuable information on animal behaviour, interactions, health concerns, environmental factors, and conservation efforts. Keepers must have thorough information about animals so they can reply questions from zoo visitors. The duty of zookeepers is to write a detailed report about each animal and inform a veterinarian if there is a problem regarding their health and behaviour. To choose this career, students have to work hard in science classes and speech courses. As a zookeeper, they will need to have a good background in animal science, but they may also need to give presentations to visitors to the zoo, so good communication skills are required. A bachelor’s degree in animal sciences, biology, zoology or related field is required if you want to become a zookeeper. The annual salary of a zookeeper in India is near about Rs.4,00,000.
Park Naturalists: Park naturalist helps the people to understand the historic, natural and scientific significance of the parks in which they are visiting. They sort out how best to plan, organize and direct programs whether through verbal presentations, practical demonstrations or through interactive programs. The aim of a park naturalist is to create interest in the environment and the natural world. They do this by highlighting historical, ecological or scientific features of outdoor surroundings by organizing nature walks, camping trips, crafts or outdoor skills. A keen interest in the environment and the capability to share this passion and knowledge with the audience or people is the main skill required for this career. It’s vital to remain comfortable while making presentations, giving lectures and leading tours. The main key skill is having an ability to identify and describe points of interests to groups in a way that will hold the public interest that is why teaching experience is also recommended. To start your career as a park naturalist you have to do a bachelor’s degree in environmental education or wildlife biology or equivalent. The average annual salary of a park naturalist is approximately Rs.3,50,000.
Eventually, the careers discussed above are some of the main career paths in the wildlife conservation. If you have a keen interest in the wildlife then you should opt one of these career options. By doing so, you will surely make your passion as your career. But the truth is that a career in the wildlife field requires serious preparation and long hours of hard work to acquire knowledge and skills; there is strong competition for positions. A dogged determination is necessary to keep your goals in sight. So, it is better for you that you will nourish your skills which are requisite in these careers.

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