Resource Conservation

SONY DSCResource conservation is a broad term encompassing modern conservation practices aimed at the wise use of the environment and its resources through the management of natural systems. This requires a thorough knowledge of ecology since ecological principles provide the basis for management of, for example, national parks, nature reserves, and freshwater and marine resources (both for sustained production and to restore damaged natural environments so they can be productive again). Research in resource conservation is normally problem-driven and consequently applied rather than pure. While a career in conservation management can include exercises like game capture, animal translocation, aerial and ground game counts, and maybe radio-tracking (all those exciting aspects that one sees on television!), it should be emphasized that these comprise just a small aspect of resource conservation.

Also included is the need to add to our knowledge of animal diversity, distributions and behaviour that are contributed by specialist zoologists like mammalogists, ornithologists, herpetologists and ichthyologists. Invertebrates are extremely important animals in most systems yet inventories and distributions of these are poorly documented. A new sub-discipline of resource conservation is conservation biology. This field depends on a strong theoretical background in genetics, population dynamics and ecology and can contribute to the long-term survival of plant and animal communities.

Jobs in resource conservation are to be found among national or provincial conservation bodies, private game reserves, non-governmental environmental organisations, environmental divisions of large corporations, environmental consultancies and at research institutions.

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