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Zoologist. Agricultural Careers By: Dr. Frank Flanders and Asha Wise Georgia Agricultural Education Curriculum Office Georgia Department of Education April 2006. Job Duties & Responsibilities. Study animals in their natural habitat Raise specimens for observation or use in experiments

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Zoologist

Agricultural Careers

By: Dr. Frank Flanders and Asha Wise

Georgia Agricultural Education Curriculum Office

Georgia Department of Education

April 2006

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Job Duties & Responsibilities

  • Study animals in their natural habitat
  • Raise specimens for observation or use in experiments
  • Collect and dissect animal specimens
  • Examine slides under a microscope
  • Prepare collections of preserved specimens or slides for identification and study
  • Conduct research studies and analyze findings
  • Write reports and give presentations
  • Analyze characteristics of animals to identify and classify them
  • Manage departments and supervise staff
  • Monitor animals' diets and breeding
  • Develop exhibits
  • Buy or rescue animals for exhibits
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Qualities and Skills

  • Zoologists should be personal and versatile
  • Able to work independently or as part of a team
  • Have strong business and communication skills
  • Be familiar with the various standard regulatory issues and marketing and management techniques
  • Exhibit patience, good work habits, and self-discipline to conduct long and detailed research projects
  • If teaching, have a healthy tolerance for students and a love for teaching and learning
  • Have the ability to work through problems methodically and be able to communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing
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To Learn More and Prepare for this Career

  • Take classes heavily concentrated in the sciences and in technology. (biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, computer science, and agriscience)
  • Participate in any wildlife projects and nature/wilderness camps offered through either the school or the community
  • Participate in agricultural clubs such as 4-H and FFA
  • Volunteer at a local zoo or wildlife museum
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Work Environment

  • May be strenuous if working on outdoor research missions
  • May work in remote areas, away from modern conveniences
  • Large amount of time in laboratories and offices when conducting tests, running experiments, recording results, and compiling data
  • 40 hour workweek for both teachers and researchers in zoology
  • May work overtime when observing animals in their habitat
  • May travel to animal habitat sites or to professional conferences
  • May be required to stay at the lab during evening hours or on weekends in order to monitor a test while conducting research
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Education

  • A Ph.D. is usually necessary for independent research, industrial research, college teaching, and for advancement to administrative positions.
  • A master’s degree is sufficient for some jobs in basic research, applied research or product development, management, or inspection.
  • Undergraduate biological science majors usually study allied disciplines such as mathematics, physics, and computer science.
  • Computer courses are essential, as employers prefer job applicants who are able to apply computer skills to modeling and simulation tasks and in operating computerized laboratory equipment.
  • Those interested in studying the environment also should take courses in environmental studies to become familiar with current legislation and regulations.
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Career Resources

International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN)

Internet: http://www.iczn.org

Smithsonian Institute

Internet: http://www.si.edu

Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology

Internet: http://www.sicb.org

Biosis

Internet: http://www.biosis.org