What does a botanist do?
As a botanist you could specialise in a variety of areas, such as plant anatomy and physiology, genetics, ecology or marine botany. Depending on the particular job, your work could include:
- identifying, classifying, recording and monitoring plant species and biodiversity
- ecological consultancy work, including surveys and environmental impact assessments
- managing a botanical collection
- searching for new species
- studying the effects of pollution, or developments such as new buildings, on plant life
- identifying and purifying chemicals produced by plants for use in products such as drugs, food, fabrics, solvents and building materials
- presenting research results in journals, books and at academic conferences
- training and supervising junior staff and volunteers
- teaching at a university
What do I need to do to become a botanist?
You need to be accurate and pay attention to detail, and have strong communication skills. You’ll also need to have patience and good concentration.
For most botanist jobs you need a degree in a relevant subject, such as:
- plant biology
- plant science
- environmental science
- Degree in a relevant subject
Where to find out more
Where could I be working?Fieldwork can involve a lot of travel, often overseas, so you may have to spend long periods of time away from home.
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