What Does a Marine Biologist Get Paid for an Hour of a Day?

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Marine biologists are biological scientists who specialize in the study of salt water aquatic life. Most scientists who work in the field of marine biology are not referred to as marine biologists, according to the Southwest Fisheries Science Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. They may work as oceanographers, biological technicians, marine mammalogists, microbiologists, ichthyologist, fishery biologists, systems analysts, physicists, hydrologists, and others. A marine biologist's hourly pay rate may depend on her specialty and experience.

Biological Scientists

  • Marine biologists who worked as biological scientists earned a mean hourly wage of $33.38 as of May 2009, according to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics. The top 10 percent of these marine biologists earned more than $48.36 per hour, while the bottom 10 percent earned hourly wages of less than $17.67. The middle 50 percent of marine biologists who worked as biological scientists earned hourly pay rates of between $24.24 and $39.26.

Hydrologists

  • The mean hourly wage for marine biologists who worked as hydrologists was $36.91 as of May 2009, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The top 10 percent of these marine biologists earned more than $52.94 per hour, while the bottom 10 percent earned hourly wages of less than $22.26. The middle 50 percent of marine biologists who worked as hydrologists earned hourly pay rates of between $27.13 and $44.67.

Biological Technicians

  • The mean hourly wage for marine biologists who worked as biological technicians was $19.78 as of May 2009, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The top 10 percent of these marine biologists earned more than $29.51 per hour, while the bottom 10 percent earned hourly wages of less than $11.80. The middle 50 percent of marine biologists who worked as biological technicians earned hourly pay rates of between $14.74 and $23.72.

Experience

  • Hourly wages for marine biologists, as with many professions, can be significantly impacted by their level of experience. The average starting wage for marine biologists who hold a four-year college degree was $19.90 per hour, according to the Centers for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence. Those with moderate experience earned mean hourly wages of $25.63. Experienced marine biologists earned an average of $32.31 per hour.

References

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