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Marine Mammal Biology
Marine Mammal Biology
By: Mandy Singer
How many different jobs are there and what education is needed?
I decided to do a report on Marine Mammal Biology. I have a deep interest in this subject and one day would like to pursue a career in Marine Mammal Biology.
There are about 100 species of aquatic or marine mammals that depend on fresh water or the ocean for part or all of their life. These species include Pennipeds (seals), sea lions, fur seals, and walruses, Cetaceans (baleen and toothed whales, ocean and river dolphins and porpoises), Sirenians which are manatees.
Scientists try to study there animalsí genetic, systematic, and evolutionary relationships, population structure, community dynamics, anatomy and physiology, behavior and sensory abilities, diseases, geographic distributions, ecology, management, and conservation.
The average salary a biologist makes a year ranges depends on the amount of experience one has. Most biologists make 30,000-40,000 a year. The work is usually back breaking and long hours out on the sea, extensive work on the computer, hauling buckets of fish to feed the animals, hours of clean-up, numerous reports, typing grant applications and permit applications.
In fields of science, jobs dealing with marine mammals vary widely. Marine mammal jobs include researcher, field biologist, fishery vessel observer, laboratory technician, animal trainer, animal care specialist, veterinarian, whale watch guide, naturalist, educator, and government or private agency position in legislative, management, conservation, and animal welfare issues. Many marine mammalsí scientists work with museum displays and collections, as a curator, an artist, an illustrator, a photographer, or a filmmaker.
A broad education is necessary for finding employment in marine mammal science. High school courses such as biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, computer science, and language, will provide a good educational base. You can talk to a guidance counselor for help in selecting course work. Good grades are important for admission to a university.
Most entry-level marine mammal jobs require a B.S. degree, with a major in biology, chemistry,
physics, geology, or psychology. A minor in any science, computer science, mathematics, statistics, or engineering also can be helpful. Good language and technical writing skills are essential. Many people are surprised by the amount of writing involved marine mammal professions. Because marine mammals are found worldwide, foreign language training is often useful.
The masterís degree is
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