£22,000 Starter - £45,000 Experienced
39 to 41 a week (evenings / weekends)
Where to start
You can get into this job through
a university coursean apprenticeship
You'll need a degree or postgraduate qualification in a subject like:
- marine biology
- environmental science
- ecology and environmental sustainability
You'll usually need 2 to 3 A-Levels, or equivalent, for a degree. For postgraduate study, you'll need a degree in a relevant subject.
You may be able to do a postgraduate ecologist Level 6 (degree) apprenticeship.
This typically takes around 3 years to complete.
You'll need a qualification and experience in an ecological science to apply.
You'll usually need a degree in a relevant subject.
Volunteering is a great way to get experience and may improve your chances of finding work. You can also build up contacts within conservation, which will be useful when looking for jobs.
Professional and industry bodies
You can join the British Ecological Society, which offers mentoring from experienced ecologists, research news, and education and job search support.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- maths knowledge
- analytical thinking skills
- thinking and reasoning skills
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- persistence and determination
- the ability to use your initiative
- excellent written communication skills
- concentration skills
- to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently
What you’ll do
Your day to day tasks will depend on the sector in which you work. For example, as an ecological scientist you could:
As a consultant ecologist you could:
- carry out fieldwork
survey and record information on plants, animals, environmental conditions and biodiversity
- deliver lessons or lectures
As a landscape ecologist, you could:
- research the impact of human activity, like housing and intensive agriculture, on the environment
- build computer models to predict the effects of development or climate change
- research and contribute to legislation and policy
- manage and create wildlife conservation areas, woodland and meadows
- monitor species and habitats
- manage a team of volunteers
You could work in the countryside, at a university, in an office or in a laboratory.
Your working environment may be outdoors in all weathers.
Career path and progression
You could work in a range of organisations like local authorities, conservation organisations, government or scientific bodies.
With experience, you could become a senior ecologist, leading a team of researchers, developing biodiversity plans or acting as a consultant on sustainable development projects.
You may also be able to apply for chartered environmentalist status.