What Do Soil and Water Conservationists Do (including Their Typical Day At Work)

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Job Description, Daily Responsibilities, and Work Life.

Job Description

Soil and Water Conservationists plan or develop coordinated practices for soil erosion control, soil or water conservation, or sound land use. They also implement soil or water management techniques, such as nutrient management, erosion control, buffers, or filter strips, in accordance with conservation plans.

Other tasks include:

  • Monitor projects during or after construction to ensure projects conform to design specifications.
  • Visit areas affected by erosion problems to identify causes or determine solutions.
  • Advise land users, such as farmers or ranchers, on plans, problems, or alternative conservation solutions.
  • Manage field offices or involve staff in cooperative ventures.
  • Develop or maintain working relationships with local government staff or board members.
  • Apply principles of specialized fields of science, such as agronomy, soil science, forestry, or agriculture, to achieve conservation objectives.

We asked Soil and Water Conservationists how satisfied they are with their job. Here is what they said.

Job satisfaction

69%

How meaningful is this job

65%


69% of them said they were satisfied with their job and 65% said they find that their job makes the world a better place or helps to make someone else’s life better.



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Typical Day At Work

On a daily basis, Soil and Water Conservationists apply principles of specialized fields of science, such as agronomy, soil science, forestry, or agriculture, to achieve conservation objectives. They manage field offices or involve staff in cooperative ventures.

A typical day for a Soil and Water Conservationist will also include:

  • Advise land users, such as farmers or ranchers, on plans, problems, or alternative conservation solutions.
  • Implement soil or water management techniques, such as nutrient management, erosion control, buffers, or filter strips, in accordance with conservation plans.
  • Gather information from geographic information systems (GIS) databases or applications to formulate land use recommendations.
  • Develop or maintain working relationships with local government staff or board members.
  • Review or approve amendments to comprehensive local water plans or conservation district plans.

We asked some Soil and Water Conservationists a few questions to find out what else does their work day look like. Here is what we found.

Do you have telephone conversations everyday in this job?81% said yes
How important is it to work in a team in this job?38% said very important
Do you have group discussions everyday in this job?81% said yes
Do you talk or work with customers everyday in this job?48% said yes
Do you have to deal with angry customers everyday in this job?5% said yes
Do you have to make decisions everyday in this job?33% said yes

Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Soil and Water Conservationists also survey property to mark locations or measurements, using surveying instruments. They may also participate on work teams to plan, develop, or implement programs or policies for improving environmental habitats, wetlands, or groundwater or soil resources.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Soil and Water Conservationists Implement soil or water management techniques, such as nutrient management, erosion control, buffers, or filter strips, in accordance with conservation plans. They might also Monitor projects during or after construction to ensure projects conform to design specifications.

In addition, they Visit areas affected by erosion problems to identify causes or determine solutions.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them Compile or interpret biodata to determine extent or type of wetlands or to aid in program formulation.

To some Soil and Water Conservationists, it is also their responsibility to Develop or maintain working relationships with local government staff or board members.


Working life

Working hours

Standard 40 hour work week

Working schedule

Irregular work schedule that changes depending on weather conditions, customer demand or contract duration.

In a typical work week as a Soil and Water Conservationist, you can expect to work 40 hour work week.

Do Soil and Water Conservationists work in an office-style work environment?

Every day
38%


Once a week
29%


Do Soil and Water Conservationists work outdoors?

Once a week
67%


Every day
24%



Is this right for me

Best personality for this career

The Builders and The Thinkers

People who are suitable for this job tends to like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery..

They also like working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. They like searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

You can read more about these career personality types here.




Learn more about Soil and Water Conservationists

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Related to Soil and Water Conservationists Job Description

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Additional resources

http://www.bls.gov/OOH/life-physical-and-social-science/conservation-scientists.htm
http://www.soils.org/


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