Biology career spotlight: Wildlife Biologist

Assumption College Undergraduate

Assumption College students who major in biology have opportunities in exciting fields like wildlife biology.

If Assumption biology students prefer an outdoor office that includes a wardrobe of rubber wader boots, and a backpack instead of a briefcase for trekking through a national forest – wildlife biology is an attractive career option.

As the human population grows and expands, as natural resource management and environmental concerns become top priorities, and as technology provides tools for collecting and analyzing data, the role and societal importance of the wildlife biologist is growing and changing. Wildlife biologists collect data in their particular area of interest and they apply it to conclude what is going on, what trends are happening in wildlife populations and possible solutions to any problems.

Other examples of responsibilities of a wildlife biologist:

  • Studying characteristics of species
  • Managing wildlife populations like invasive species and exotics
  • Developing conservation plans
  • Obtaining specialized training like SCUBA diving or controlled burns
  • Analyzing influence of human activity on wildlife

The USDA Forest Service employs professionals who manage over 193 million acres of national forests and grasslands. (This isn’t counting the state and national protected coastlines, waterways or state parks.) Biologists with the Forest Service must have a bachelor’s degree with a major in a biological science like biology or natural resource management, including coursework in wildlife subjects like ecology, botany, zoology, genetics, mammalian anatomy, animal behavior, physiology, or others — all of which are courses offered at Assumption.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the occupations associated with wildlife biology and zoology is growing at a rate of 5 percent from 2012 to 2022.

In Massachusetts, wildlife biologists have opportunities to explore a range of ecologically diverse environments without even leaving the state. They can work with state and national parks, in fisheries, wildlife and habitats, recreation and conservation and more.

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