If you are one of the hundreds of thousands of children or learners who want to work with animals one day, then you might also be aware that career guidance on this subject is extremely limited. And this is a global phenomenon which even the United Nations is trying to address. The internet doesn’t always help either. Search engines such as Google, where a search for “different jobs in working with aardvarks” gives you almost nothing of value to help you plan your career path.
So how do you find out about all of the various careers that you can choose from?
Well, One Zoo Tree is compiling the world’s first fully digital career guidance system for those who want to work with animals. And to show you what can be found when looking into specific careers, here is The Ultimate Guide to Jobs working with Aardvarks!
The aardvark, also known as Orycteropus afer, is a Nocturnal mammal native to Africa. Despite its odd appearance, the aardvark is an important part of many African ecosystems and plays a critical role in maintaining the health of the soil.
The aardvark is a unique-looking animal with a long, slender snout, sharp claws, and thick skin. They have a small head with long, pointed ears and a short, stocky body. Their legs are thin and muscular, with four toes on each foot. Aardvarks have a large, bushy tails that they use to swipe at insects and to help them balance while walking.
The most notable feature of the aardvark is its long snout. This snout, which is about a foot long, is covered in small, sensitive hairs that the aardvark uses to detect Prey. The aardvark has no teeth in its mouth, but it does have a long, sticky tongue that it uses to catch and eat insects.
The aardvark can also close its nostrils to keep dirt and dust out while it digs.
Aardvarks are found throughout Africa, from the savannas of East Africa to the forests of West Africa. They prefer habitats with loose, sandy soil that is easy to dig through. Aardvarks are found in a variety of ecosystems, including grasslands, woodlands, and deserts.
Aardvarks are solitary animals that are primarily active at night. They spend most of their day in underground burrows. Aardvarks can dig very quickly, using their powerful legs and sharp claws to create burrows that are up to 30 feet long. These burrows are used for sleeping, breeding, and hiding from predators.
Aardvarks are omnivores that feed primarily on ants and termites. They use their long, sticky tongue to catch insects, and they can consume up to 50,000 insects in a single night. Aardvarks also eat fruit and occasionally small animals like lizards and birds.
Aardvarks are not considered endangered, but they are listed as a species of “least concern” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). However, their populations are declining in some areas due to habitat loss and hunting.
Aardvarks are often killed by farmers who view them as pests. Aardvarks can cause damage to crops and may be killed in retaliation. Additionally, aardvarks are hunted for their meat, which is considered a delicacy in some parts of Africa. Aardvarks are also threatened by habitat loss. As human populations grow, more land is cleared for farming and development, which can destroy aardvark burrows and disrupt their habitats.
Despite their unusual appearance, aardvarks are an important part of many African ecosystems. Their ability to dig burrows helps to maintain the health of the soil, and their diet of insects helps to control insect populations.
You can learn more aardvark basic facts by visiting our free Short Courses:
All our Beginner to Advanced Level courses are open to visitors and do not require you to sign in or be a member
This Course deals with the taxonomy and basic facts about the Aardvark.
Working with the Aardvark
Working with aardvarks in Africa can be an exciting and rewarding career choice for individuals who are passionate about wildlife conservation and animal care. Here are seven potential career paths for those interested in working with aardvarks in Africa:
- Wildlife Biologist: A Wildlife Biologist observes and studies Terrestrial animals and plants found on land, in the air and in freshwater, with a focus on fieldwork, academic research, laboratory work, consulting, charity, outreach or policy making.
- Veterinarian: Veterinarians who specialize in wildlife medicine can work with aardvarks in zoos, wildlife rehabilitation centres, and research institutions. They are responsible for providing medical care to aardvarks and other animals, including preventive care, diagnosis and treatment of illnesses, and emergency care.
- Zookeeper: Zookeepers who work with aardvarks are responsible for their daily care, including feeding, cleaning, and providing enrichment activities. They also monitor the animals’ health and behaviour and work closely with veterinarians to ensure the animals are healthy and thriving.
- Wildlife Photographer: Wildlife photographers and videographers who specialize in aardvarks can help to raise awareness about these unique animals and the threats they face. They may work independently or for media outlets, and travel to remote locations to capture footage of aardvarks in the wild.
- Field Guide: Field guides work with tourists to provide educational and informative experiences related to wildlife and nature. Aardvarks are a popular attraction for ecotourists in Africa, and guides who specialize in aardvarks can lead tours to observe these animals in their natural habitats while educating visitors about their importance to the Ecosystem and conservation efforts.
- Anti-poaching Ranger: Anti-poaching rangers are normally armed and highly trained individuals who regularly patrol a pre-defined area to stop or reduce illegal hunting (poaching) of wildlife, including aardvarks.
- Online Publication Editor: Online publication editors are specialists who plan, manage and produce online (digital) magazines for readers on various topics, such as aardvark conservation or facts.
These are just a few examples of potential careers working with aardvarks in Africa. Other career paths may include research assistants, field technicians, and environmental educators. Whatever career path one chooses, working with aardvarks can be a fulfilling and important way to contribute to conservation efforts and protect these unique animals for generations to come.
There are actually 12 different career categories in OZT, of which most will allow you to work with the aardvark. Some only require observation of the animal to replicate them in some way, such as in art, design, media, photography and publication. Other categories require physical interaction, such as careers in animal care, health, protection and conservation.
Have a look at all of the
Skills And Equipment
To work with aardvarks, you would need a combination of knowledge, skills, and experience. Each career has its own set of unique skills and knowledge. Here are some of the key skills you would need:
- Knowledge of aardvarks: You should have a good understanding of the biology, behaviour, and habitat of aardvarks. This knowledge will help you to provide appropriate care and ensure their welfare.
- Animal handling and care: You should have experience in handling and caring for animals. This includes being able to safely restrain and move aardvarks, administer medication, and provide appropriate food, water, and shelter.
- Observation and monitoring skills: You should be able to observe and monitor aardvarks’ behaviour and health, and identify any signs of illness or distress.
- Communication skills: You should be able to communicate effectively with other staff members and veterinarians about the needs and conditions of the aardvarks.
- Problem-solving skills: You should be able to identify and solve problems related to the care and welfare of the aardvarks. This may include dealing with injuries or illness, managing social dynamics, and creating appropriate environmental enrichment.
- Patience and empathy: Working with animals can be challenging, and you should be able to remain patient and empathetic in difficult situations.
Overall, working with aardvarks requires a combination of specialized knowledge, practical skills, and personal qualities that enable you to provide high-quality care for these unique animals.
The kind of equipment depends entirely on the type of career. The careers where you tend to use a more hands-on approach will require the following equipment:
- Tracking equipment: Researchers may use radio collars or GPS devices to track the movements and behaviour of aardvarks in the wild.
- Camera traps: Cameras placed in the wild can capture images of aardvarks and provide valuable data on their behaviour and habitat use.
- Handling and restraint equipment: In the rare cases where an aardvark needs to be handled for medical or research purposes, specialized equipment such as capture nets, gloves, and sedatives may be used to ensure the safety of both the animal and the handler.
How can YOU prepare for a career working with Aardvarks?
Here are a few important steps to remember on the path to securing a job where you can work with Aardvarks:
- Reflect on your values, interests, and strengths. These important characteristics can show you which categories of careers to look into
- Research different careers. Don’t just settle on a career because it sounds good. Research as many as possible before you make a decision.
- Explore your options. Look into what you would like to do after school. Do you want to study further, or start your own business? Where do you want5 to study?
- Seek guidance from trusted sources. Use trusted sites, such as OZT, and talk to people who know about career guidance or who have expertise in certain fields.
- Make a decision and take action. Once you have a general idea, start looking at gaining experience in handling animals. DON’T WAIT UNTIL AFTER COMPLETING SCHOOL!
The above steps can all be planned and completed while still in school!
These steps are explained in more detail in our free Short Course:
One Zoo Tree is a FREE resource for children and students of all ages who want to work with animals. Our primary objective is to ensure that our members have ALL of the data available to ensure that they can make practical career choices. To achieve this, we have put together a career database (the leading database of its kind in the world) with over 500 comprehensive career profiles. We have also designed thousands of free short courses to help members prepare for a future career.
Use the site for in-depth career research, or join our online Community to interact with other members around the world as well as gain access to loads of extra career tools and information!