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How to become a Zoologist

avg. starting salary

Has your current career become too dull to bear? We’ve got this… Zoologists study and observe animals, both in their natural habitat and in a laboratory. Their research helps them to learn about the origin, evolution, and distribution of animal species, as well as understand their behaviour and discover how they interact with the environment. Zoologists could choose to specialise in a number of fields, from investigating diseases and developing vaccines, to conservation and coming up with environmental policies and regulations. Depending on their specialism, they’ll usually be based at a zoo, aquarium or wildlife park, or in a laboratory. Zoologists may also choose to work in an educational environment, where they carry out research and/or teach students about their specialism. General duties for a Zoologist include:
  • Conducting field and/or laboratory research
  • Carrying out experiments
  • Categorising and organising animal species
  • Calculating animal populations
  • Using complex scientific procedures for analysis
  • Writing reports and creating presentations and displays to share their findings

It probably goes without saying that a passion for animals and the environment is essential for this role (N.B that goes beyond enjoying watching cat videos and playing with puppies). However, working with animals is far from easy, and having the right patience for the role will be key for anyone looking to become a Zoologist. Alongside a fascination about living things, a scientific mind with a specialised knowledge of biology will similarly help you to thrive. A Zoologist will also need:
  • Excellent communication skills
  • A methodical work ethic
  • Problem solving skills
  • Enthusiasm
  • The ability to concentrate on intricate tasks
  • Research and analysis skills
  • An aptitude for critical thinking



Up to £28,000

Research Zoologist

Up to £30,000

Senior Research Zoologist

Up to £45,000

"I personally specialise in research University, where I collect and analyse specimens, carry out molecular and lab-based research, then write papers on my findings. The job is really varied, and while one day I could be out looking for ants and worms (it’s not quite as gross as it sounds), other days could be spent doing in depth analysis on each organism or presenting my findings to a class of students. I really enjoy what I do, and I get huge satisfaction from the fact that my research could help to conserve endangered animal species."

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