How to become a Wildlife Biologist

Do you love nature and the outdoors? Are you passionate about protecting the environment or taking care of animals? Perhaps a career as a wildlife biologist is right for you.

  • Wildlife biologists work in many areas. Marine biologists are interested in aquatic life and their ecosystems. They study whales, sharks, fish, and other marine plants and animals. Sometimes they work at aquariums.
  • Other wildlife biologists work in nature centers or as forest rangers. Some do research; others teach at universities or work with government agencies to protect wildlife. Some work for museums or zoos.
  • Wildlife biologists sometimes write books or magazine articles detailing their research and teaching others about conservation.
  • Wildlife biologists need at least a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as environmental studies or biology. Many wildlife biologists have a master’s degree. Wildlife biologists need to have a keen interest in science and math. They need to be able to review data, conduct research, think creatively, and solve problems.
  • You won’t become a millionaire as a wildlife biologist. Most earn between $50,000 and $85,000. But you’ll probably have good work hours doing interesting things. You might spend some of your time in an office and some of your time out in the field.
  • Most jobs in wildlife biology are with federal and state government agencies. These jobs can be hard to come by. The more education you have, the better your chances of landing a good job.


Questions and Answers

Question: Could I become a television personality like Jeff Corwin or the Kratt brothers?

Answer: Maybe, if you have that perfect blend of knowledge, enthusiasm, and stage presence, along with a little luck. Chances are, you’ll more likely get a great job away from the television cameras.


Learn More

Want to work with animals? Watch this short video about people who have careers training and caring for animals at zoos and amusement parks.