Wildlife Biologist

Wildlife Biology

GS-0486

Position Overview

The work of wildlife biologists at the Department of the Interior involves the ecology, behavior, and conservation of wild animals and their habitats. This work involves coordinating wildlife management programs with other natural resources activities, such as land use planning and forest and range management.

This position is represented at the following bureaus

Bureau of Indian Affairs
Bureau of Land Management
Bureau of Ocean Energy Management
Bureau of Reclamation
National Park Service
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
U.S. Geological Survey

Candidate Description

The ideal candidate should be very detail oriented in order to plan complex scientific projects. This individual must be able to apply their professional knowledge of wildlife biology and related disciplines in order to analyze complex biological data and must be able to communicate technical information to a variety of audiences. 

Work Environment

Work is performed in both an office setting and outdoors in the field. Field work may involve long periods of time in potentially hazardous terrain or inclement weather.

Minimum Education Requirements

Please see the Individual Occupation Requirements and the Professional and Scientific Positions Group Qualification Standard on the OPM websites.

Career Level Requirements

Responsibilities by Level

  • Entry:

    • Collects data from field investigations and makes observations
    • Prepares samples and performs data analysis
    • Drafts portions of reports or correspondence related to technical work
    • Prepares graphs and charts

  • Mid:

    • Identifies research needs and recommends requests for proposals or statements of work
    • Performs data analysis and writes reports on findings
    • Plans and implements biological investigations that affect wildlife resources and habitat conditions
    • Designs and implements habitat improvement and restoration projects in coordination with external stakeholders

  • Journey:

    • Conducts studies on the impact of existing or proposed management or public practices on wildlife resources
    • Modifies and adapts standard techniques, processes, and procedures
    • Develops extensive plans for major wildlife projects including estimates of personnel, equipment, materials, and schedules required to carry out highly specialized plans
    • Conducts program analyses and recommends modifications to program objectives or procedures

  • Senior:

    • Formulates and recommends new policies, strategies, standards, and plans of national scope for development, coordination, and management of wildlife program activities
    • Maintains liaison with and provides technical counsel to external stakeholders
    • Analyzes and resolves complex technical problems for which current information is inconclusive or unproven
    • Develops and implements cooperative programs with external stakeholders, such as private landowners, local or state governments, or special interest groups

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Strengths by Level

Entry
Mid
Journey
Senior
  • Accountability
    Holds self and others accountable for measurable high-quality, timely, and cost-effective results. Determines objectives, sets priorities, and delegates work. Accepts responsibility for mistakes. Complies with established control systems and rules.
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    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Attention to Detail
    Is thorough when performing work and conscientious about attending to detail.
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    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Compliance
    Knowledge of procedures for assessing, evaluating, and monitoring programs or projects for compliance with Federal laws, regulations, and guidance.
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    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Creative Thinking
    Uses imagination to develop new insights into situations and applies innovative solutions to problems; designs new methods where established methods and procedures are inapplicable or are unavailable.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Customer Service
    Works with clients and customers (that is, any individuals who use or receive the services or products that your work unit produces, including the general public, individuals who work in the agency, other agencies, or organizations outside the Government) to assess their needs, provide information or assistance, resolve their problems, or satisfy their expectations; knows about available products and services; is committed to providing quality products and services.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Entrepreneurship
    Positions the organization for future success by identifying new opportunities; builds the organization by developing or improving products or services. Takes calculated risks to accomplish organizational objectives.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Flexibility
    Is open to change and new information; adapts behavior or work methods in response to new information, changing conditions, or unexpected obstacles; effectively deals with ambiguity.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Influencing/Negotiating
    Persuades others to accept recommendations, cooperate, or change their behavior; works with others towards an agreement; negotiates to find mutually acceptable solutions.
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    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Interpersonal Skills
    Treats others with courtesy, sensitivity, and respect. Considers and responds appropriately to the needs and feelings of different people in different situations.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Oral Communication
    Expresses information (for example, ideas or facts) to individuals or groups effectively, taking into account the audience and nature of the information (for example, technical, sensitive, controversial); makes clear and convincing oral presentations; listens to others, attends to nonverbal cues, and responds appropriately.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Organizational Awareness
    Knows the organization's mission and functions, and how its social, political, and technological systems work and operates effectively within them; this includes the programs, policies, procedures, rules, and regulations of the organization.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Partnering
    Develops networks and builds alliances; collaborates across boundaries to build strategic relationships and achieve common goals.
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    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Problem Solving
    Identifies problems; determines accuracy and relevance of information; uses sound judgment to generate and evaluate alternatives, and to make recommendations.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Project Management
    Knowledge of the principles, methods, or tools for developing, scheduling, coordinating, and managing projects and resources, including monitoring and inspecting costs, work, and contractor performance.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Reasoning
    Identifies rules, principles, or relationships that explain facts, data, or other information; analyzes information and makes correct inferences or draws accurate conclusions.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Teamwork
    Encourages and facilitates cooperation, pride, trust, and group identity; fosters commitment and team spirit; works with others to achieve goals.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Technical Competence
    Uses knowledge that is acquired through formal training or extensive on-the-job experience to perform one's job; works with, understands, and evaluates technical information related to the job; advises others on technical issues.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15
  • Writing
    Recognizes or uses correct English grammar, punctuation, and spelling; communicates information (for example, facts, ideas, or messages) in a succinct and organized manner; produces written information, which may include technical material, that is appropriate for the intended audience.
    Show Tool Tip
    Entry 5-7
    Mid 9-11
    Journey 12-13
    Senior 14-15

Common Pathways

Candidates who made this career change most commonly held these occupations...

57.3%

Natural Resources Management and Biological Sciences

See Position Details
14.5%

Biological Science Technician

See Position Details
8.2%

Wildlife Refuge Management

See Position Details

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