carear in waterfowl conservation

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carear in waterfowl conservation

Postby Mallyard » Thu Jul 21, 2005 1:16 pm

I've been giving alot of thought into my Carear and what I'm going to do, I'll be a junior in HS next year and it's time to start taking this kinda thing seriousely.
I want my carear to be associated with what I love to do best, Waterfowl hunting. I thought about maybe becoming a waterfowl conservation officer, or somthing of that nature. I'm not sure what kind of salary they get either. I was hoping for some more information and input on the subject. Or any other hunting realated carear Ideas. Thanks,

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Postby Gooseboy » Thu Jul 21, 2005 2:26 pm

I would be intereseted in that to.
The group ended up with 420 birds.

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Postby Dogman » Sun Jul 24, 2005 2:11 pm

When I was in High School I wanted to get into wildlife management as a career.Any subject related to that kind of work,I ate it up.
When I researched the career more I found out some sobering things.Chief among them was that for every 2000 candidates with a qualifying resume there was only one job opening available! :eek:
Now thats going back 25 years so maybe its changed some,otherwise you need to bust some serious hump and hope you are one of the chosen few.

Not trying to scare anyone away from good ambitions but it wouldn't hurt to thoroughly research the subject before commiting to it.

Hope you can find a way to make it work. :thumbsup:
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Postby Gooseboy » Sun Jul 24, 2005 8:48 pm

i heard the pay sucsk to.
The group ended up with 420 birds.

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Postby Trois_beaux_canards » Sun Jul 24, 2005 10:27 pm

My brother's fiance is doing a masters in wetland conservation/managment in Nebraska...
I think it's a good choice.
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Postby gsphunter » Mon Jul 25, 2005 7:03 am

I'm probably going to go into the University of Missouri - Columbia's Fisheries and Wildlife Program. From what I have seen, Research Biologists make a fairly good income, although this is all relevant to what good income means to you. You aint gonna get rich, that's for sure, but I have seen first hand from my dad what working in a job you hate can do to you.

One thing I can say to is to have a back up plan. Find out what your degree will do for you in other fields. You'd be surprised what any college degree can getcha when you are looking for a job.
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Postby aaron » Tue Jul 26, 2005 3:07 pm

If your looking into the law enforcement side of it, you might want to look at the US Fish and Wildlife Service . Due to waterfowl's listing as a migratory bird,most of the extensive waterfowl law enforcement is handled by them. Especially when a wildlife refuge is concerned . I've been in law enforcement for 12 years ,10 of which has been federal and have gotten to work with these guys some. Pretty squared away agency. You can go to www.usajobs.gov and pull up an agency listing for the fish and wildlife service under the dept. of the interior; if you look at the job announcement you'll geta good idea of what they make.
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Postby gunman » Wed Jul 27, 2005 1:44 am

If you like to hunt at all, DO NOT BECOME A Conservation Officer, DNR, or any other branch of wildlife enforcement, thats what I started to go to school for but after doing an intern I relized something really quick, yea sure its great you get to be outside in the wild enforceing the laws and such with cool snowmobiles and boats and such BUT........this all comes with a price, ask ANY C.O. If you become one, don't plan on ever hunting again on an opener! Or hardly at all for that matter. There main job is to enforce wildlife rules and regulations, well obviously the main time to do that is during the seasons! I know quite a few conservation officers, some are very good personal friends, I can never get them to go hunting with me becasue they are always working! Just a word for the wise, If you plan on ever hunting an opener.....don't do the law enforcement end of it......my $.02 -Chris
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Postby Webfoot12 » Tue Aug 09, 2005 11:40 am

Mallyard,
The University of Missouri in Columbia has a great agricultural department. (I know that it might be hard coming from KS, you might get stoned, :mrgreen: ) You can get a degree in fisheries and wildlife and I believe you can specialize in wetland managment. I think they offer a masters in the field as well. Which is what you should strive for.

http://www.snr.missouri.edu/

I talked to one guy a while back who was getting his masters in waterfowl management. He always talked about field trips to listen and watch birds, catching and banding waterfowl and most importantly soil management, among other things.

Although I could not find any specifics about it online, you still might want to give them a call.

Good Luck
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Postby quackkiller » Tue Aug 09, 2005 5:55 pm

I'm starting college this fall and I haven't decided what I will be majoring in. Right now I'm thinking of something in Wildlife Biology. Not sure how it will work out though. If not, I'll definately be doing something in agriculture/ or animal science.
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Postby bgoldhunter » Thu Aug 25, 2005 1:50 pm

GSP-

If you are interested in Mizzou, pm me and I can get you some names of people to contact there. I was Fisheries and Wildlife major when I attended MU, but they kindly asked me to leave :mrgreen:

I still know some guys there, and am good friends with some agents. If you ever go to Columbia, I might be able to set up a meeting with them, as we are only about 30 miles away.
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Postby Fowlercon » Mon Aug 29, 2005 7:01 am

pm me. I've got contacts in Kentucky that can answer all your questions and then some.
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Waterfowl

Postby keegan511 » Fri Oct 21, 2005 2:13 pm

PM me I am in school working towards a terminal degree in wetlands and waterfowl management I'll answer any questions you might have about the field and such.
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Postby phillipstd » Fri Oct 21, 2005 3:58 pm

OK THERE ARE ALLOT OF MISCONCEPTTIONS GOING ON HERE my girlfreind is a biologist, and first of all they make between 40k and 120k a year, depending on how much you work and who you work for, du doesnt pay that much, the state doesn't pay much more, the private sector is where it's at, there are jobs galore, she specilizes in salmon and steelhead, and around here she can pick and choose her jobs, I am acutally thinking about going back to school too. if I was in highschool right now, I'd plan on going to a good 4 year school for biology!!!!!
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Postby marcbme » Tue Nov 08, 2005 2:00 pm

The University of Montana-Missoula has one of the premire wildlife biology schools in the nation!

But truth in advertising requires me to state that I am a student there also. While it is true that, as an enforcement agent, you probably would never hunt an opening day, you WILL know where all the good spots are.

Another major concern is that with such a competative area such as wildlife managment, you almost have to get atleast a masters degree to find any good work. (That's why I chose fisheries managment instead).

But remember, college is all about choices. You might find out your not as hot about wildlife managment as you thought you were.

My recommendation, get a bachelors in range managment. They are in such demand they can almost write their own paycheck. PM me if you have anymore questions.
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Postby goose5657 » Wed Nov 09, 2005 4:40 pm

Mallyard,
working outdoors is a great career. i have done it for the past 27 years. i got a BS @ SMSU, a masters @ A & M. i work strictly wetlands. I currently work for MDC. The thing about this career is you do not get to hunt as much as you think. you stay busy working during that time. if you go the agent route you can count on even fewer hunts. i would suggest this to you. when in college go and do as many fall internships as you can. you can get a feel for work vs. hunting. when i worked for private landpwners i did hunt everyday of duck season for 14 yrs straight, but those jobs are hard to come by. i ended up coming back to public service because i want to give soemthing to those guys who can't afford to buy their own property. so it all ends yp being what you are most comfortable with.
ggod luck to ya! :thumbsup:
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Postby TexasGeese » Thu Nov 10, 2005 4:57 pm

I'll be finishing up with my Conservation Biology and Biodiversity degree this year from Texas A&M University. If anyone really wants to get into Wildlife and Fisheries, Texas A&M has the largest dept. in the nation. If you have any questions, let me know.
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Look at all the factors

Postby Jay Jolicoeur » Thu Dec 01, 2005 4:40 pm

I have a buddy who worked with the Alligator Program in Florida as a Biologist. Brilliant guy, he made about as much as a teacher. The wildlife officer made much more money in some cases almost double. When they went up in helicopters (could be flying together) the wildlife officers got hazard pay and he didn't. Talked to a federal game warden the other day (I was all legal). He pointed out when every one is hunting he is working.

From my experience get a degree that is deversified, don't lock yourself in. Stay out of debt build equity then you can do whatever you want. I am 36 I have been a teahcer, a middle school assistant princiapal, a middle school principal, in fulltime ministry (chaplain for the University of Central Florida) I am still doing that but I am unemployed. I have stayed out of debt bought and sold property, don't need to work for a while. Gonna build a couple houses. The money I will make will set me up so I can duck hunt next year. Remember I started as a teacher. The key is no debt. I wish you the best.
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Re: Look at all the factors

Postby Gooseboy » Sun Dec 04, 2005 8:33 pm

Jay Jolicoeur wrote:I have a buddy who worked with the Alligator Program in Florida as a Biologist. Brilliant guy, he made about as much as a teacher. The wildlife officer made much more money in some cases almost double. When they went up in helicopters (could be flying together) the wildlife officers got hazard pay and he didn't. Talked to a federal game warden the other day (I was all legal). He pointed out when every one is hunting he is working.

From my experience get a degree that is deversified, don't lock yourself in. Stay out of debt build equity then you can do whatever you want. I am 36 I have been a teahcer, a middle school assistant princiapal, a middle school principal, in fulltime ministry (chaplain for the University of Central Florida) I am still doing that but I am unemployed. I have stayed out of debt bought and sold property, don't need to work for a while. Gonna build a couple houses. The money I will make will set me up so I can duck hunt next year. Remember I started as a teacher. The key is no debt. I wish you the best.


I dont know about where you live but here in Oklahoma teachers dont get paid squat.
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Postby Swamprat » Sun Jul 23, 2006 2:11 am

It's all relative. There are 3 fields in wildlife management that consistently have open jobs right when you get out of school: endangered species, nuisance wildlife, and game species.

With a bachelors degree you will start LOW and not earn much money for awhile. DU and Delta have internships for people at this level, you can make a little money, get REAL experience, and write your own ticket after 1-2 years.

My advice (being in the field 8 years now) is to get your bachelors degree, get worthwhile summer jobs (wildlife research, park biologist, etc), and if you can, take some graduate classes right when you finish (or if possible go on for your masters degree--1.5 to 3 more years).

That approach will start you off in the high 30's.

As far as conservation officers---tough line of work. I tried to get into it between undergrad and grad school and couldn't get a spot b/c where I'm from (Virginia Beach), they can get all these retired cops, retired military MPs, etc to do the job, and typically the starting pay is around 20K.

Somebody said "the private sector's where it's at." When you go to work for the private sector, your employer is out there for the $$$---you go to work for WHOEVER pays you. That could be a bunch of hunters who want to manage 1000 acres of wetlands for all the right reasons........or it could be the developer who wants a permit to fill it all in and pave that 1000 acres. You never know. Also--forget taking days off to hunt in the middle of the week. Forget getting a quick hunt in before work. Forget leaving at 2pm to get in a sunset hunt in that perfect little wood duck hole you have....on the other hand you WILL make money. For that duck hunting trip to Argentina or whatever.
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Postby On the porch » Thu Jul 27, 2006 1:26 am

You'll need more than one degree and in more than one field of study. Most have two to four degrees, and some of them are post grad. degrees such as Masters and Doctorats. Thats 6 to 8 years of straight full school work load years! And for most people, that's for just ONE Masters degree. Good luck with it. The average number of agents that are hired a year by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife is 13-14 and last year they had somewhere close to 3000 applicants for those positions and most were on their third and fourth go around for a position.
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Postby Swamprat » Thu Jul 27, 2006 4:21 am

I had no idea. Those are horrible odds! I'll never feel bad again about not getting one, right out of undergrad, with no law enforcement experience...

That's astounding....1 in 300 odds.
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Postby TooTall » Thu Jul 27, 2006 9:26 am

I plan on going to UT martin and getting my degree in wildlife biology and then somewhere in MO to get my masters in a more waterfowl directed degree. I don't ever plan on becomming a millionare. I just want to have a job where I won't be stuck in an office behind a computer day after day. I love planting foodplots and habitat management. And of course I love duck hunting. I would think that most of the work goes on durring the summer leaving me off work for alot of the duck season. It sounds like a hard earned honest living so I'm going for it head first.

I've got relatives that are conservation officers and they hardly ever get to hunt. They have to deal with crap all day and have to cut a butt load of grass durring the summer just to have enough money to get by. And they are top of the totem poll too. :eek:

Could some of you guys that go to college in MO and are getting a degree in these same things shoot me a PM with the name of the college and the location of it. I would much rather go to college in MO than in TN. Better duck hunting and I just like MO better. I hope to end up in MO and have a bunch of relatives in St.Louis and in the SE part of the state.

Thanks in advance and hopefully I'll see some of yall around in the future
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Postby gsphunter » Tue Aug 01, 2006 4:23 pm

check out www.missouri.edu

They have a fisheries and wildlife college.

I'm not sure about the website, but Northwest MO state has a wildlife biology and conservation degree. This is about 5 hours northwest of StL though.

Good luck.
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Postby greenster » Tue Aug 01, 2006 5:00 pm

ill be starting classes this fall for wildlife management(major) and forrestry (minor). I was aware of the "low salary" of bio. hence why i also geting degree in forrestry.
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