Interpretive Naturalist

Explain the wonders of nature to the general public.
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Quick Stats

Salary Range
$36,000 – $89,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Interpretive Naturalists do?

Interpretive Naturalists make the natural world accessible to everyone else. As an Interpretive Naturalist, you share your knowledge, experience, and insight about a specific area (a state park, animals at a zoo, a botanical garden, etc.) with visitors. The job truly is what it sounds like: You interpret nature for the uninitiated.

Your job will never be the same thing two days in a row. Every day, new people come to you, eager to hear what you have to say about your area of expertise. You may lead a tour regularly or have some prepared remarks that you make about various animals or displays, but the questions that you get from guests and students will constantly keep you on your toes. If you’re working the reptile house, you better make sure you know why a cobra’s markings look the way they do, because there’s definitely an eight-year-old kid out there who won’t leave you alone until you explain it.

Being an Interpretive Naturalist is a great way for you to live your values, give back to nature, and have a chance to talk about the part of nature that you love every day. Over the course of your career, you will no doubt have numerous opportunities to expand your core of knowledge and diversify your areas of expertise. Expect a lifelong career of growth and education.

Should I be an Interpretive Naturalist?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Persistent: You keep pushing through, even when faced with tough obstacles.

  • Also known as: Park Interpretive Specialist

    How to become an Interpretive Naturalist

    Most Interpretive Naturalists have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:tab9ba&chl=no+college+%2818%25%29|certificate+%2824%25%29|associate%27s+%281%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2857%25%29|master%27s+%281%25%29|&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,18,57
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