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Career as Plant Biologist

Career as a Plant Biologist

About Plant Biologist

A plant biologist is an amazing career option for a candidate who has a specialisation in the study of plant and wildlife or equivalent course. It is a profession in which a candidate is associated with various activities like analysis and research of plant kingdom, protection of wildlife, conservation, sustainable development and spreading of awareness of the importance of flora in an environment through technical survey and analysis. 

A plant biologist specialises in various topics like biological and chemical composition of plant species, analytical skills, research and testing, report generation and surveying. A professional as a plant biologist is responsible to provide technical and scientific information about biological systems. They also collaborate with the government sector, private sector and public sector to focus on the protection of plant life and sustainable development.

They also play a vital role in identifying the natural resources, different species of plants and their medicinal properties. They explore the composition of various species of plant and after research, list down the benefits or consequences of consumption of crops or plants on human health. 

Eligibility to become Plant Biologist

The general eligibility criteria to apply for a job role as Plant Biologist is given below: 

  • The candidate must hold a Bachelor’s / Master’s, Ph.D. degree in Biological Sciences, Agriculture, Botany, Biology or related disciplines to apply for various job roles as a Plant Biologist
  • He/ She must have technical knowledge and understanding of plant life
  • Candidates with good communication skills, writing skills, analytical and surveying skills are considered for job role as a Plant Biologist

 

How and When to Start?

If being a Plant Biologist interests you as a career option, then there are certain decisions that you need to take in the early stages of your life and then move ahead in the career path. The following guidelines will help you become a successful professional as a Plant Biologist.

  1. If you are about to complete or have completed Class 10th studied then you must choose Science Stream in Class 12th with Biology as one of the subjects. It is the initial phase to choose a specialised course at the undergraduate level.
  2. After Class 12th studies, you can choose a bachelors course that is related to biological science.  Some of the courses you can opt are B.Sc Biology, B.Sc Microbiology, BSc Botany, B.Sc Biotechnology, B.Tech in Biotechnology etc. 
  3. While studying at an undergraduate level, enhance your skills and knowledge by working on project works seriously, opt for the relevant internship programme, take help from professors and visit workplaces and interact with professionals.
  4. After the completion of a bachelor's degree, you can either opt for higher education or apply for job roles in private or government organisations.  You can either pursue a master’ s degree in a specialised discipline from a reputed institute in India or go abroad for higher education. A masters degree will help you get better exposure to better learning and opportunities.

          If you wish to work, then you can apply to various organisations as per the area of interest of the job role. 

Types of Job Roles Plant Biologist

A Plant Biologist can choose from a list of job roles. Some of the job roles they can choose and the responsibilities are listed below: 

Plant Technician

A plant technician is a technician who is responsible to collect, analyse, survey date of habitat using various techniques and methodologies. They are involved in the monitoring of vegetation processes and identification of various species of the plant kingdom.

A plant technician must have good communication, writing and analytical skills. The professionals will need to coordinate with various agencies and organisations for surveying, sampling, report generation, quality analysis and other associated tasks.  

Wildlife Biologist

A wildlife biologist is associated with the protection, management and conservation of wildlife habitats. They are responsible to manage and execute plans to protect wildlife habitats and resources.

They study and survey the importance of forest management and the role they play in environmental protection. They implement projects to enhance plant biodiversity. They also collect plant samples to analyse the medicinal value and its effects. 

Environmental Biologist

Environmental Biologists are responsible to understand the effect of various human activities on the ecological balance. They connect with the government, industries, agencies and public to discuss sustainable development and alternatives to protect the plant habitat.  

They analyse the usage of land, urbanisation, factory setup, transportation and construction of roads and their impact on the environment and plant habitat. 

An Environmental Biologist plays an important role in spreading awareness on sustainable management and to ensure that human activities comply with the environmental laws and regulations.

Research Associate

A research associate develops and performs techniques to analyse the plants and crop samples. They usually work in laboratories with a team of researchers and scientists. A research associate must have good interpretation, visualization and statistical skills as they are involved in managing huge sample data and its results after the experiment. 

He/ She uses scientific methods, techniques and procedures to draw conclusions from a set of testing and experiments. 

Aquatic Plant Researcher 

An Aquatic Plant Researcher is responsible for the analysis and research on aquatic plant species. They work as a researcher in labs or research projects to explore the compositions of aquatic plant species and the role it plays in the environment. 

They assist the team comprising scientists and researchers to study aquatic plants and their impact on aquatic life and maintaining balance in nature. 

Employment Sector or Industry

Plant biologist professionals have opportunities to work in various government organisations or the private sector. The employment sector or industry where they can work is listed below:

  • Healthcare industry
  • Pharmaceutical industry
  • Agriculture sector 
  • Wildlife Sanctuaries  
  • National Parks 
  • Food Industry
  • Research Firms 
  • Laboratories 

Top Recruiting Companies/ Agencies/ Organizations

Government agencies, as well as the private sector, hire candidates as a plant biologist based on their eligibility, skills and abilities. Some of the recruiters of plant biologist in India are listed below :

  • Central Council for Research in ayurvedic sciences
  • Wildlife Institute of India
  • GB Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment & Development
  • Central Council for Research in Homoeopathy
  • Union Public Service CommissionForest Research Institute
  • Jawaharlal Nehru Tropical Botanic Garden and Research institute

Planning to choose Plant Biologist as your career?

Pay Scale/Salary of Plant Biologist

The pay scale of a Plant Biologist varies according to the job roles and skills. The pay scale for different job role as a Plant Biologist is given in the following table: 

Job Role 

Starting Annual Salary

Mid- Level Salary

Upper-Level Salary 

Plant Technician


 

Rs. 2.40 Lakhs

Rs 3.60 Lakhs 

Rs 4.80 Lakhs 

Wildlife Biologist

 

Rs 3.00 Lakhs 

Rs 5.00 Lakhs 

Rs 7.00 Lakhs

Environmental Biologist

 

Rs 3.00 Lakhs 

Rs 5.00 Lakhs 

Rs 7.00 Lakhs

Aquatic Plant Researcher 



 

Rs 3.60 Lakhs 

Rs 4.80 Lakhs 

Rs 7.50 Lakhs 

Research Associate

 

Rs 2.40 Lakhs 

Rs 3.60 Lakhs 

Rs 7.50 Lakhs 


Note* - Inputs for Salary Structure have been taken from external sources and are subject to vary/ change. Please check with other sources to confirm. 

Books & Study Material to Become Plant Biologist

Students interested in making a career as a Plant Biologist can refer to the following list of best books on Plant Biology:

  •  Plant Biology by Alison M. Smith, George Coupland, Liam Dolan, Nicholas Harberd, Jonathan Jones, Cathie Martin, Robert Sablowski, Abigail Amey

  • Botany in a Day, The Patterns Method of Plant Identification by Thomas J. Elpel

  • Laboratory Manual for Stern's Introductory Plant Biology by James Bidlack, Shelley Jansky, Kingsley R Stern

  • Plant Identification Terminology by James G. Harris, Melinda Woolf Harris 

  • Botany: An Introduction to Plant Biology by James D. Mauseth

Pros of becoming a Plant Biologist

Every job role that you choose has a certain challenging task and each of the responsibilities comes up with certain pros and cons. In this section, we have covered the advantages and limitations of a career as a Plant Biologist:

Pros:

  • A plant biologist can choose to work in various sectors like agriculture, pharmaceuticals, laboratories, research department, food industry etc,

  • It is a good career option for candidates who have an interest in plant kingdom and environment.

  • Candidates can choose to opt from various job roles like researcher, plant technician, wildlife Biologist, aquatic plants Biologist

Cons of becoming a Plant Biologist

  • Candidates can expect better pay scale and growth only after a certain year of experience.
  • In India, students are not well aware of the opportunities of a plant biologist.
  • A plant biologist may have to face new challenges and should have good convincing abilities

Paths for Being Plant Biologist

FAQs about Plant Biologist

What are the work conditions for a Plant Biologist?

A Plant Biologist can choose an indoor or an outdoor job as per their own preference in environmental setup.

Where can one get employed after becoming a Plant Biologist?

After becoming a Plant Biologist, one can get employed in the Healthcare industry, Pharmaceutical industry, Agriculture sector, Wildlife Sanctuaries, National Parks, Food Industry, Research Firms, Laboratories, etc.

How much does an experienced Plant Biologist get paid?

An experienced Plant Biologist in India can earn up to 16 LPA and above.

What are some of the top colleges in India to study Plant Biology?

Some of the top colleges in India to pursue Plant Biology in India are BU Bhopal, Tezpur University, St. Xaviers College, Loyola College, etc.

What are the different job roles for a Plant Biologist?

The different job roles for a Plant Biologist include Plant Technician, Wildlife Biologist, Environmental Biologist, Researcher, etc.

Is there any entrance exam to pursue Plant Biology in India?

Yes, there are various entrance exams to pursue Plant Biology such as ICAR AIEEA, JNU CEEB, IIT JAM, etc.

What is the average pay scale of a Plant Biologist?

The average pay scale of a Plant Biologist is INR 4,00,000 to 6,00,000.

What are the top recruiters in India for Plant Biologist?

Some of the top recruiters in India for Plant Biologists are Central Council for Research in ayurvedic sciences, Wildlife Institute of India, GB Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment & Development, Central Council for Research in Homoeopathy, Union Public Service, Commission Forest Research Institute, etc.

What is the educational qualification required to become a Plant Biologist?

To become a Plant Biologist, the candidates must pursue a Bachelor/ Master’s degree in Biological Sciences, Agriculture, Botany, Biology or an equivalent degree.

What are the responsibilities of a Plant Biologist?

A Plant Biologist is responsible for various activities like analysis and research of plant kingdom, protection of wildlife, conservation, sustainable development and spreading of awareness of the importance of flora in an environment through technical survey and analysis.

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