Botanists are scientists who concentrate on the study of plant life. Some may investigate microscopic structures within plants, while others may do research about plants. They are also called biological scientists and are highly educated in their field of practice. Many botanists contribute their studies at conventions, conferences, and in specialized periodicals. The field of botany is divided into a variety of specialties. Heredity or genetics, for example, is the study of inheritance and genetic differences in plants. Classification ecology gazes at how bigger methods, like nutrient cycling, work.
Education and Training Requirements
In general, botanists need a doctoral degree. Aspiring botanists should have a major in biology or botany as an undergraduate. You can get a doctoral degree in a more concentrated area, such as plant physiology. It normally takes four years to receive a bachelor’s degree and an additional two years for a master’s degree plus another two or three years to acquire a doctoral degree.
Duties and Responsibilities
The nature of the work of a botanist is broad. It covers more than three hundred thousand types of plants varying from ground-hugging mosses to giant redwood trees. There are many approaches for studying plants and botanists typically concentrate in one aspect of plant life. They scrutinize characteristics common to diverse plant species. They categorize and classify plants and every so often travel around unknown areas in order to discover new varieties of plants.
Botanists may also work in universities and colleges as educators; they conduct research, and teach students about the study of plants. Many botanists also work on civilizing the wellbeing of plants in particular those vital for human existence such as plants for food and medicine. They perform experiments to find out about its development on how it defends itself from harm. A botanist can also work in the field, conducting experiments and research studies on plants.
Skills and Traits
Aspiring botanist should be very patient and well-organized. They should have a well-rounded knowledge about the study of plants and must be flexible. A botanist must be very keen with details and have a great respect for nature.
Botanists must be inquisitive and should take pleasure in working with plants. They should have the labor-intensive adroitness desirable to handle fragile samples and apparatus.
In the field, working conditions vary for a botanist. Some botanists work inside in dirt free and well-lighted laboratories. Others squander a great deal of their time outside or in conservatories. Some botanists are required to tour from time to time to locations where they can gather plant samples, while others spend part of their time in classrooms and offices. Botanist working hours are generally flexible, but regularly require forty or more hours a week. Sometimes, due to the demanding job botanists, have they work in rotating shifts to meet the job’s needs.
Salary and Compensation
The annual compensation and salary of a botanist depends on their education and experience. Locations and the kind of job also play a factor in botanist compensation. The average annual salary for botanists is around $62,000 to $70,000 with additional benefits like paid vacations and holidays, pension plans, and health insurance.*
*According to the BLS, http://www.bls.gov/oco/