What is a Zoologist?
A zoologist is one of the professionals – or better known as a scientist – whose job is strictly linked with animals or wild animals. Their study is based on these wildlife creatures and the way that they interact with their ecosystems and the way they live in their habitat. Their study commonly involves animal physical characteristics, as well as behaviors, and the impact that the humans or the mankind has on the wildlife and their natural environment – also called their habitat.
The salaries for zoologists vary greatly according to several factors such as geographical location, as well as the type of employment. In 2016, the reported average income for zoologists according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics was estimated at $64,212 per year. When it came to the employment level the highest industry that hired these professionals were the state government agencies, the scientific consulting, as well as scientific research.
For instance, those who work for state government could have expected at annual incomes that gathered around $53,142 per year, while those working in scientific research took home incomes of around $58,521 per year. The federal government granted zoologist incomes that were estimated to reach at $79,142 per year while the scientific consulting services offered salaries of $65,292 per year.
Zoologists’ highest concentration jobs could be found in states such as Idaho, Alaska, Montana as well as Wyoming that had a salary average comprised between $58,952 per year and up to $69,382 per year. The top paying states with the highest annual average were to be found in the District of Columbia that granted annual earnings of $99,810 per year, followed by Maryland that offered $96,032 per year and a few others as well.
In 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistic reported an hourly wage of almost $29 per hour and an annual median income of around $59,610 per year. The highest incomes received by zoologists reached at $95,010 per year or even higher. The industries that provided top paying incomes except those reminded earlier were to be found in architectural, engineering and related areas where the incomes were estimated at $68,912 per year. Municipal government provided for zoologists salaries that reached $62,112 per year.
The best top zoologist salary paying states for that year were District of Columbia that provided an annual income estimated at $102,982 per year, Maryland that offered $97,872 per year, Connecticut with $88,554 per year as well as a few others. However, the incomes also varied according to each state. For instance Alaska provided zoologists with incomes that used to reach at a median value of $65,210 per year, while in California the granted income reached at a median average of $63,510 per year.
On the other hand, Illinois provided an established median income of around $55,510 per year while Kentucky offered around $49,010 per year. In Nevada, the income for these professionals had an average of $47,510 per year, while in Oklahoma the estimated median average reached at $45,210 per year.
Salary of a Zoologist in 2016
In the United States, for the year 2016 the median average estimated income for a zoologist reaches at $52,284 per year, according to the salary data survey provided by PayScale. The starting point in the incomes of these professionals ranges from $20,227 per year and up to $94,991 per year. The bonuses that are granted can be comprised from $1.52 and up to $27,510, this leading in the end at a total payment that is estimated from $20,465 per year and up to $85,310 per year.
The vast majority of individuals who work in this field are mainly women rather than men. The incomes of zoologists are influenced by several other factors such as geographical location, type of employment as well as years of experience. The national reported average for these professionals reaches at an average of $47,010 per year.
For those who hold a Bachelor’s of Science, a zoology degree can expect to various incomes. For instance a zoologist with 1 and up to 4 years of activity in the field will gain an income that reaches at $67,862 per year, while one with 5 and up to 9 years of experience in the field will take home around $60,010 per year. Zoologists who work for 10 and up to 19 years can expect to earn around $50,060 per year while those with more than 20 years in the field and plenty of working activity will earn around $117,510 per year.
According to Salary.com, the expected median average income for Zoologists is reported to be at $69,045 per year, with an average that is estimated to range between $56,548 per year and that can climb up to $85,147 per year. According to the divided percentages, 10 % of the Zoologists gain less than $45,172 per year, while 90% of these professionals will take home around $99,909 per year.
The earnings of a starting zoologist are estimated at an annual average of $39,182 per year while junior zoologists can expect to gain a yearly average that reaches at $47,952 per year. An experienced zoologist has a reported income that gets somewhere around $59,682 per year while a senior professional will take home around $75,042 per year. The top paying zoologists gain an average annual income of around $97,392 per year.
All across the US, the zoologist salary related with all the other careers ranks in percentage is in the top of 79%. For instance, a zoologist salary comes on the fifth position, the top first incomes are of veterinarians that gain around $88,010 per year, followed by the zoo endocrinologist income that is around $79,010 per year, farmer income with an average of $70,010 per year and animal scientists who gain around $64,010 per year.
The salaries of zoologists also vary according to each region, area and state being mainly influenced by the living expenses in that particular region, as well as by the costs of living. For instance, in Maryland the yearly income that is granted for these professionals reaches at $90,812 per year, while in Alaska the incomes that are gained reach at an annual average of $72,510 per year. New York on the other hand reports incomes that get around $67,282 per year, while in North Carolina the earnings for zoologists have an average of $50,642 per year.
In West Virginia, the reported incomes are even lower with a yearly average that gets around $43,172 per year while in Kentucky the earnings reach at $43,782 per year.
Zoologist Salary in Canada, Australia and UK
- In Canada, the average gained income of a zoologist as reported by Salary.com is around $C$70,795 per year. The lowest point salary in this career field reaches at around C$46,317 or even less while those situated on a top rank gain an income that reaches at C$102,339 per year. According to the PayScale salary survey report, the earnings for Zoologists are estimated between C$36,756 per year and up to C$77,529 per year. The median income is forecasted to be around C$54,282 per year.
- In Australia, the starting point in the income of a zoologist according to Compare Courses has an average estimated at AU$47,010 per year. An estimated increase is strictly linked with the years of experience in this career field. For instance, a zoologist with up to five years of working experience can except to take home an income comprised between AU$60,010 per year and up to AU$75,010 per year. One of these professionals with 10 years of activity and plenty of working experience can expect at an income estimated to range between AU$100,010 per year and up to AU$150,010 per year.
- In the United Kingdom, an entry-level position for a zoologist will lead to an income that is estimated to be comprised between £21,010 per year and up to £25,010 per year. The earnings of these professionals vary also according to the type of employment. Those who work in research usually have a higher income that is around £25,010 per year and up to £30,010 per year, while those who are holding a higher position and work in the teaching staff can expect to gain around £45,010 per year.
Job Description of a Zoologist
The main zoologist employers are universities, zoos or wildlife agencies as well as other. This job usually requires and involves an environment that is in an outdoor setting and from time to time journeys. The responsibilities vary according to the geographic location in which they have to be but it will also depend upon each and every employer.
The most encountered and common ground duties include many tools that are used to gather and analyze the data, biological samples that show the animals health, observe animals interactions, be able to work with research teams.
Other that are important in this job are the study of animal species, their origin and their development, their behaviors, diseases, their habitat, as well as the established relationship that is taking place between the animals and the environment in which they are dwelling. Zoologists will have to prepare environmental reports or biological reports, as well as conduct surveys upon the wildlife habitat.
How to Become a Zoologist?
If your dream is to become a zoologist then you should take into consideration all the steps that will get you to that point of being hired as one. The typical requirement when getting a job as a zoologist is to have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university. Instead if you are trying to get into higher level up positions, you’ll need advance training and education.
A very common and accepted bachelor’s degree for zoologists is the one in biology or zoology. Due to the nature of the job, zoologists take classes in math and statistics that will help them further on when having a job with gathering and interpreting the data. The courses that are usually taken involve wildlife biology as well as zoology, while other courses that can be taken include sciences such as anatomy, genetics, ecology, chemistry, cellular biology and a few others.
If, for instance, you want to move for more managerial positions or higher level ones with more important projects to research and follow, then you’ll need a master’s degree. Very important educational areas for these professionals are computer science and geographic systems information as well. These courses will allow you to be prepared for the usage of software programs as well as very common tools in various geographical regions.
If you are aiming for an academic position such as independent researcher or an academic professor then you’ll need a doctoral degree in Zoology or Biology. Gaining experience is one of the important factors when being a zoologist, since experience will put you to work in important projects. While being in college, don’t skip the opportunity to participate or enroll in grant projects in order to gain a basic experience that will later help you or in field coursework.
Usually the grant projects funded by the government are attributed to the zoologists that have gained proven accomplishments, and they have publications in the field as well. Education and experience are key points on the list of getting further as a Zoologist. Another point is having several required critical skills such as problem solving skills and great analytical abilities that will grant you with an effective implementation of research projects.
Others that come very handy in this job are the observational skills that will allow you to better monitor the animal activities in their natural environment, as well as allow you to document their behavior. Another skill that comes right to your aid is the communicational skill that will help you to report and publish findings to your employers, government clients or academic peers.
Work Environment and Schedule
Studying animals in their natural environment brings forth for the zoologists a lot of time spent in the field. The work in the field will depend also upon the job that these professionals enrolled in and the field in which they are working. Some of them will spend weeks or even months out in the field. Their working environment usually involves various settings such as laboratories, outdoors, as well as offices.
Those who are dedicated to a deep research will even travel and go to the habitat and the natural environment of the creature that they are observing. This will often mean that they are going to be put a lot of time in danger due to the animal attacks, or very unpredictable weather conditions as well as the fact that they risk a lot since they could get sick or get a disease. The living conditions due to the area of the specific location can be very harsh, some can include having a comfort that involves a tent and a cooking spot over a campfire.
Since every location can be very different in some parts to be able to get around you’ll need a guide to take you there. Observing animals all day will bring a very different working schedule that many times will include long and irregular working hours. The schedule for zoologists will also depend on each job or on the research they conduct and the length of the project itself.
A typical working hours schedule is to be found for those Zoologists that are hired in zoo’s, animal parks, laboratories as well as offices, aquariums and other facilities that provide the same weekly working schedule. Those who are hired by universities will usually work for 40 hours per week but they might also have irregular working hours if the project they are dealing with requires so.
Pros and Cons of Being a Zoologist
Like in any job, there are advantages and disadvantages that are usually best to be weighed before taking the leap forward. This career field can be very rewarding since your main duty is to work with animals. Another rewarding fact is that there are many and plenty of job opportunities for advancement that will allow you to go and do your own research.
You will find out that this field allows you to choose the setting in which you’d like to work. You’ll find jobs outdoors, in laboratories or in offices, not to forget the fact that there are also government job and employment opportunities.
On the other hand, you’ll have to be aware of the stress mainly physically that can emerge due to all the fieldwork. When you are working in the field, it is a huge possibility that your working schedule will include long and irregular hours.
If by any chance you’ll want to advance in this career field on a higher position, you’ll also need an advanced training and education level. Your working time will include a lot of time or an extended period of time spent in the field, but if you like that then it shouldn’t be a problem.
Conclusion on Zoologist Salary
The various salary fluctuations are also due to the economic level, as well as the type of job that these professionals are doing, not to mention the type of employment and the position that they hold.
Zoologists’ incomes also vary according to each state and according to the largest or the lowest concentration of jobs in a particular area, the regions or locations in which they found work, as well as based on the industries they work for.