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High Paying Careers in Nature/Wildlife

by Megan Torrance

Many high paying careers involving nature or wildlife actually are done in a laboratory or similar research setting. These occupations usually work to understand, maintain, reproduce or improve environmental factors related to natural environments. However, there are a few jobs that allow an up close and personal relationship with the great outdoors while still paying an average salary of more than $60,000 per year.

Biochemists and Biophysicists

Biochemists and biophysicists primarily research physical and chemical properties of biological processes and living things. Some entry-level positions are available for applicants with a bachelor's or master's degree, but a Ph.D. is mandatory for advancement into independent research and development.The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports these occupations earn a median annual salary of $89,470 per year as of 2012.

Conservation Scientists and Foresters

Conservation scientists and foresters are responsible for maintaining land quality in parks, range lands, forests and other natural settings. A bachelor's degree qualifies an applicant for an entry-level position, although employers often seek candidates with a degree specifically accredited by the Society of American Foresters. As of May 2012, these occupations earned an average income of $63,590 per year, according to the BLS.

Zoologists and Wildlife Biologists

Zoologists conduct research on wildlife in their natural habitats.

Zoologists and wildlife biologists study the habitats and characteristics of wildlife and other animals. Entry-level openings require a bachelor's degree, and a master's is usually necessary for advancement. Some experts obtain a Ph.D. and compose independent research or teach in college settings. The BLS reports zoologists and wildlife biologists earn $62,500 on average each year. Veterinarians in zoos can earn even more, bringing in a median of $77,713 per year treating animals.

Marine Biologists

Marine biologists can earn high salaries depending on their specialization. For example, Jennifer Hooper, a marine biologist and deputy director at the Association of Village Council Presidents in Alaska, earns between $40,000 and $60,000 annually. With a master's degree in the field, Kim Damon-Randall, a fisheries biologist and supervisor for a National Marine Fisheries Service division in Massachusetts, brings in over $125,000 each year.

About the Author

Based in the Northwoods of Wisconsin, Megan Torrance left her position as the general manager for five Subway restaurants to focus on her passion for writing. Torrance specializes in creating content for career-oriented, motivated individuals and small business owners. Her work has been published on such sites as Chron, GlobalPost and eHow.

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