Agroecologist Career Profile
Do you want to work as an Agroecologist ?
READ: This page helps you to read about the career and the info you need to decide on whether this is indeed the career you want to follow.
RESEARCH: Learn about the skills required and minimum subjects to enter this career, as well as the places where you can study further after school.
PREPARE: If you want to plan and prepare for the career, then join the OZT Community! Members have access to tools, while chatting with other students and experts from around the world. Prepare to be amazed!
17 July 2023
What is an Agroecologist?
An Agroecologist applies ecological concepts and principals in farming to allow for a more natural way of farming.
3 ways to be an Agroecologist:
- Use agroecology as a farmer
- Use agroecology in mentoring and consulting with farmers (work with farmers, but not farming yourself)
- Work for research institutions or government
What is Agroecology?
Agroecology promotes farming practices that;
- Mitigate climate change – reducing emissions, recycling resources and prioritising local supply chains.
- Work with wildlife – managing the impact of farming on wildlife and harnessing nature to do the hard work for us, such as pollinating crops and controlling pests.
- Put farmers and communities in the driving seat – they give power to approaches led by local people and adapt agricultural techniques to suit the local area – and its specific social, environmental and economic conditions.
The Agroecologist career can be found in the following career categories:
- Farming and Livestock Management
- Wildlife Conservation
What does an Agroecologist do?
Groups of animals an Animal Caretaker works with
What is the level of Interaction with the Animals?
What does an Agroecologist focus on?
The primary focus of an Agroecologist is to design and run a farm in such a way that nature, especially the animals and plants, grow and work together to yield a harvest or produce strong livestock.
Examples are to allow honey bee hives on a farm to help with pollination and not use pesticides. Or to allow natural forests to grow on the farm which provide shade for smaller animals which in turn enrich the soil. Or build owl boxes on the farm to allow owls to catch rodents that usually require poison to get rid of.
What are the daily tasks of an Agroecologist?
- Design the farm around existing natural points, such as trees and water points
- Research environmental and ecological best practices for a farm
- Research new breeding methods and practices for animal that benefit the ecology (fowls eat insects)
- Keep Environment safe and clean
- Monitor nutrition and health of the animals
- Liaise with product buyers
- Administration and marketing
- Administration and filing
The working environment of an Agroecologist?
Where does an Agroecologist work?
An Agroecologist works mostly outdoors in planning the best farms, or actually farming.
Places of Employment –
Agroecologists can be self employed and own the consultancy or farm. They may also be employed by agricultural research institutions, conservation organizations, government, large corporate farms.
What is the average annual salary of an Agroecologist?
On average the income per year is around US$55,000. This will differ from country to country.
What difficulties can an Agroecologist face?
The most difficult part of the job is that it requires extremely long hours, including working over weekends and holidays.
Future growth and Possibilities
The industry is competitive, but new appointments are growing at an average of 6% due to the renewed calls for sustainable farming.
Availability of Jobs
Which Skills are required by an Agroecologist?
The skills required for a career as an Agroecologist can be divided into two very important groups. The first is the group containing life skills, which are the core skills that are necessary or desirable for full participation in everyday life. The second group is career skills, or the specific skills required to allow a person to enter and operate effectively within a specific career. Some or maybe even all of the life skills can assist in strengthening the career skills, and they might even be the same for specific careers.
- Critical thinking
- Creative thinking
- Decision making
- Problem Solving
- Effective communication
- Interpersonal relationship
- Animal Handling
- Animal Care
- Handling equipment
- Customer service skills
- Good health and physical fitness
- Computer literacy
Which Subjects must I have at School to prepare for this career?
Biology will give you a good start in learning more about the specific animals and plants you want to work with.
The subjects you choose at school are important as they lay the foundation for further studies at college or university. While still at school, it’s also important to learn more about the animals you will work with, as well as gain some experience.
OZT has a list of various tertiary institutions where you can study further, after school. Each of these institutions also have their own Group page on OZT where you will find the exact subjects they require of you to have passed in school. Keep these requirements in mind, and discuss it with your school, guidance counselor and parents to ensure that you are prepared!
What will I need to Study to become an Agroecologist?
The minimum educational requirement to enter this career is a College Diploma.
Further studies towards a Bachelor’s Degree will be highly recommended.
Subjects in agriculture, ecology, animal science and animal husbandry.
Short Courses –
Short Courses in subjects such as animal physiology, environmental studies, botany and climatology.
The duration of a College Diploma can be between 2 to 3 years, and Bachelor’s Degrees can be up to 3 or 4 years. Short Courses are usually between a few weeks and a year.
Possible Career Preparation Paths
If this is your dream career that you want to pursue, then it’s important to plan the way forward.
Why is planning important?
To ensure that you understand the requirements for your career, and that you are always prepared for the next step on the road towards your dream. A Preparation Path is like your road map to where you want to be.
Possible Combined Career Paths
It is possible to sometimes combine two or more related careers. This normally happens when you study and practice a specific main career, but the knowledge and experience gained also help you to have a paying hobby or secondary income career.
Possible Alternatives (there are a lot more):
Stepping Stone Career
Being an Agroecologist can also be used as a stepping stone career. A stepping stone career is one which is used to help you get to another career, normally because the other career is too difficult to reach (sometimes due to things like high study fees etc).
You can begin as a junior worker after basic short courses and expert guidance (maybe working under a mentor). The money made can then be used to pay for studies towards a promotion or another career, and the experience helps in gaining knowledge. One paying to help get to the other.
Some of the possible paths:
Training and apprenticeship
Even though it is important to study to get into some of the animal careers, most of the skills you will need as an Agroecologist will be acquired through practice. This means that you will learn how to perform some of the daily tasks by actually doing it a few times and learning the steps.
Apprenticeship is also possible where you need to learn skills from a more senior eco-farmer.
Join the Agroecologists Group to learn more and even interact with the educational institutions that will help you secure your dream career!
Average level of education of all the people who enter the career:
Licenses, Certificate, Registration and Professional Associations
Certain animal careers require some form of legal certification to prove that you can indeed do the work, and work with the necessary equipment.
Learn more about requirements by joining the OZT Community.
Where can I study further?
All of the above information will help you understand more about the Career, including the fact that there are different paths to take to reach it. But if you are almost done with High School (Grades 11 or 12), you also need to start thinking about further studies, and WHERE you will study.
See the List of Universities, Colleges and Online Training Academies who offer courses towards livestock and animal husbandry.
Do you have information that you would like to contribute to this career? Please click on the red beetle to access the contribution form.
Join the OZT community & career Group
Join us as a special member and learn more about becoming an Agroecologist.
Members of the Platform have special access to:
- Info on the best places where you can study (colleges, universities and online)
- Expertly designed advice to prepare you for the career, and links to places where you can gain valuable experience. For some career experience is necessary, otherwise you wont get the job!
- Top notch info on each of the different species you will work with
- Make friends around the world and share knowledge
- Compete and win points, badges, games, prizes and certificates. Be the best of the best, while you learn and prepare!
If you have decided on being an Agroecologist, please click on the JOIN GROUP button. Members will be directed to the Group, while non-members will be assisted to register first.
If this career is NOT the career for you, then you may return to the MAIN CAREER menu, and search for something different.
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Career Profiles and Resources
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