Jobs protecting endangered animals run a large gamut. Jobs exist for governmental agencies, nongovernmental agencies and academic institutions, and range in nature from desk work to fieldwork, from publicity to education. Those with skills in fields not commonly associated with endangered animals, such as advertising, may serve the cause of protecting endangered animals just a much as policymakers and veterinarians by thinking outside of the box and seeking out unique employment opportunities.
Countless nongovernmental organizations, or NGOs, work to protect endangered animals throughout the world. Large NGOs like the World Wildlife Fund and the International Union for Conservation of Nature work to protect all manner of endangered animals throughout the world by raising awareness, working with governments and completing research. Smaller organizations such as the Cheetah Conservation Fund work to protect a single species. Jobs for these organizations range from field veterinarian and researcher to publicity director, webmaster, administrative assistant and legal counsel.
The United States Fish and Wildlife Service works to protect endangered species. This governmental agency maintains a list of all endangered species in the country and oversees habitat preservation and anti-hunting and -poaching programs. Employees of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service work with endangered animals to encourage population recovery by promoting breeding practices and protecting natural habitats while working to educate the American public about voluntary conservation methods and ways in which we can all help protect these animals. The Fish and Wildlife Service also protects endangered plant species.
Those conducting fieldwork for the benefit of endangered animals work for a number of agencies. These individuals -- usually zoologists -- live in or near the native habitat of a specific species and work to protect that species through habitat preservation, the prevention of human incursion on and hunting in the species' native environment, the promotion of animal breeding and health, and increased public awareness of the plight of certain animals. Zoologists work with a team of individuals while conducting fieldwork, and often do so compliments of funding provided by a governmental agency or NGO. These individuals conduct important research by collecting population statistics, identifying key problems animals face and observing behavioral patterns. Zoologists conducting fieldwork must hold a master or doctorate degree in zoology or biology.
Academic jobs protecting endangered animals often go hand-in-hand with fieldwork. Once zoologists complete a fieldwork project, they return to the academic institution for which they work to finalize research findings collected during fieldwork and publish these findings. Research and publication help governmental agencies and NGOs devise new methods of protecting endangered animals. Academic jobs also allow zoologists, biologists and more to teach students about the plight of endangered animals and encourage these students to conduct volunteer work or go on to careers in endangered animal preservation. Not all academic zoologists conduct fieldwork, and not all zoologists engaged in fieldwork are employed by academic institutions. Academic jobs generally require the highest level of degree achievable in a given field.
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