Conservationists work with private landowners and federal, state and local governments to manage, improve and protect the planet’s natural resources. This career involves consulting with and advising farmers and other stewards of the land about the best practices for improving their land and productivity without damaging the environment. Conservationists research and study conservation management practices to provide sustained production of forage, livestock and wildlife. They also measure and assess vegetation resources for biological assessment companies, environmental impact statements and conservation monitoring programs.

What Responsibilities Will I Have?

  • Research and study conservation management practices
  • Develop technical standards and specifications used to manage, protect, conserve and improve natural resources
  • Maintain soil stability and vegetation for nongrazing uses, such as wildlife habitats and outdoor recreation
  • Manage forage resources through fire, herbicide use or revegetation to maintain a sustainable yield from the land
  • Plan and direct construction and maintenance of conservation improvements such as watershed research and soil-erosion control structures
  • Study forage plants and their growth requirements to determine varieties best suited to a particular area
  • Utilize equipment for monitoring conservation structures and navigation
  • Develop new and improved instruments and techniques for activities such as reseeding
  • Measure and assess vegetation resources
  • Offer advice regarding water management, forage production methods and control of brush
  • Perform surveys and set construction stakes for a variety of practices
  • Operate specialty equipment in accordance with safety regulations

Recommended High School Courses:

  • agricultural education
  • earth science
  • chemistry
  • biology
  • botany
  • mathematics

Education/Training Required:

A bachelor’s degree in natural resources, crop science, soil science, biology or a related field, such as horticulture, plant physiology or environmental science, is required.

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