shell on the waterline of a gravelly beach (image: Aaron Burden on Unsplash)

Conservation is a broad all encompassing term, however countryside and nature both sit well with conservation and conservation is often an integral part of many jobs within the countryside sector.

Countryside conservation is ensuring that the landscape, ecosystem and habitats are in a good condition and managed sympathetically.

Wildlife conservation looks more specifically at protecting and promoting good management for healthy populations of animals, from small oil beetles to large furry Scottish wildcats.

Nature conservation is a combination of both countryside and wildlife conservation.

Jobs and employment

Typical jobs include Countryside Officer, Reserves Officer, Wildlife and Conservation Officer, Nature Conservation Worker, Conservation and Policy Officer, Conservation Advisory Officer. Many ecology roles are conservation based either in practical terms or advice and policy provision. 

See current countryside conservation vacancies advertised with CJS here.

See current wildlife conservation vacancies advertised with CJS here.

See current nature conservation (ecology) vacancies advertised with CJS here.

To gain the experience required volunteering is frequently a good start.

See current countryside conservation volunteering opportunities advertised with CJS here.

See current wildlife conservation volunteering opportunities advertised with CJS here.

See current nature conservation (ecology) volunteering opportunities advertised with CJS here.


Skills, training and CPD.

There are many different skills and qualifications required for conservation work ranging from practical land management to publicity and promotion ensuring the project aims are heard.

Practical skills frequently requested include:

For wildlife posts specific training for the species involved these could include

Office and admin skills often required include: 

For Countryside conservation a qualification in countryside management is usually a prerequisite.

For Wildlife conservation a zoology based qualification is usually needed.

An ecology qualification covers both aspects.

Information and in depth articles

Putting growth on the right path, Staffordshire County Council

Captive breeding the hazel dormouse for reintroduction, Wildwood Trust

The British Mycological Society and UK Fungus Day

Dragonflies and me; a career as an insect specialist, British Dragonfly Society

Virtual Fencing, a Conservation Graze-Changer?, BCP Council

This is Archaeology, The Council for British Archaeology

An interview with an Historic Environment Officer, Northumberland National Park Authority

The Rise of Female Wildlife Rangers Globally, World Female Ranger Week

Conservation & Neurodivergent Me, Alister Harman

Waddling Wildlife Conservation, RZSS

SEED Madagascar’s Conservation Research Programme

River restoration holds the key to a sustainable future for fishing, Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust

What works in conservation? Conservation Evidence

A Lesson in Habitat Management, Dr Gerard Cheshire

& Another Thing: An honest place for conservation issues

Connecting people with place, Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust

Conservation - an accessible industry?, BCP Council

River Restoration and Habitat Enhancement, The River restoration Centre


Useful organisations

Countryside Management Association

Scottish Countryside Rangers Association

National Trust

National Trust for Scotland

Natural England

Scottish Natural Heritage

Natural Resources Wales

The Wildlife Trusts


British Trust for Ornithology

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