What employment sector do you work in?
How long have you had a green job for nature?
£30,001 – £40,000
Please describe the work that you do.
Freshwater ecologist for the Environment Agency, undertaking Macrophyte and fish surveys, collecting and analysing invertebrate samples. Leading on water resources issues, Hydroecological validation (HEV) plots, pollution investigations.
Analysing Water quality and Ecological data to determine the status of freshwater environments and what pressures are impacting them. Reviewing and writing reports on these investigations and highlighting actions to be taken to improve the watercourses.
What do you most like about your job? Any dislikes?
It is a really nice mixture of fieldwork, lab work and office work. Our busiest season is the summer so its generally nice weather when we are out and about wading in rivers. Lab work is fascinating seeing these tiny invertebrates up close reveals a whole new world, and differentiating between species can be as challenging as the placement of singe hairs.
Attending pollution incidents can be depressing (and smelly) when the incident has resulted in environmental harm.
What inspired you into this career?
I loved nature and the environment ever since I was little, going on walks and finding snake skins or owl pellets was like finding buried treasure. Little did I know when I was pond/river dipping at a wildflower center every summer holiday it would eventually become my job. There is so much that the environment provides for us, the air we breathe, the water we drink, the mental health improvement a walk-in nature can provide. It is our duty to do all we can to protect it, so that is why I decided to dedicate my career to helping improve this vital environment.
Have you faced any challenges in progressing your career so far?
After my masters I found it hard to break into the Ecological jobs market, So I volunteered at multiple wildlife locations, museums and sought out any opportunity to increase my knowledge and show willingness to learn in order to set myself apart from other candidates when applying for jobs.
What education/training did you have?
BSc in Biological Sciences, MSc in Palaeobiology,
What advice would you give to someone coming into the profession?
Be passionate, seek opportunities to learn as wide variety of subjects as possible. Stay aware of new trends and issues effecting the environment. Be confident and proactive. Don’t underestimate the importance of communication skills, teamwork and Equality Diversity and Inclusion.