Learn to manage wildlife populations, behaviour and wellbeing, to work with animals in the wild or captivity.

Course Code: BEN205
Fee Code: S3
Duration (approx) Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment
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Study Online. Learn to Manage Wildlife for a Career in Environmental Management, Animal Care or Conservation.


Tips for starting your career in Wildlife Management

  • TIP - keep your skills current and relevant to the field of wildlife management. You can do this through professional development and study.
  • TIP -  Join a networking group of people within the industry.
  • TIP -  Get as much experience as possible before you head into the workplace. Paid or unpaid experience is highly valued by prospective employers.

Lesson Structure

There are 9 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction to Wildlife Management
    • What is Wildlife Management? Approaches to Wildlife Management
    • Purpose and Goals, Decision Making, Carrying Capacity, Limiting Factors
    • Landscape Fragmentation, Habitat Diversity
    • Biological Control and Integrated Pest Management.
  2. Wildlife Ecology
    • Behavioural Ecology, Population Ecology
    • Community Ecology and Ecosystem Ecology, Interactions within a Community
    • The Food Web, Energy Flow, Imbalances within an Ecosystem
  3. Wildlife Habitats
    • Classification of habitats, biomes, ecosystems and microclimates, man-made biomes
    • Changes to habitat, water for wildlife,
    • Managing forests, deforestation and afforestation.
  4. Population Dynamics
    • Fecundity and mortality rates
    • Life tables -static or time specific life tables, case studies.
  5. Carrying Capacity
    • Exponential population growth
    • What is carrying capacity
    • Fisheries stock management and stock management methods.
  6. Wildlife Censuses
    • Total counts, sampling populations
    • Accuracy vs precision, survey methods
    • Trapping methods, transects, mapping wildlife and animal ethics.
  7. Wildlife Management Techniques
    • Habitat modification
    • Fire
    • Vegetation management
    • Predator control, monitoring populations
    • Captive breeding, population culls, pest management
    • Effects of control and control techniques.
  8. Wildlife Management Law and Administration
    • Policy and wildlife law
    • International law, conventions, treaties, domestic and national law
    • Sources of legislation
    • Environmental ethics and enforcement.
  9. Wildlife Management Case Study Research Project
    • Problem-based learning project.


  • Develop a concept of how man manages wildlife populations in different situations around the world.
  • Understand and discuss the principles of wildlife ecology.
  • Understand wildlife habitats and their importance to managing wildlife.
  • Explain how populations of any one species change and adapt to variations in their environment.
  • Understand carrying capacity and its importance in managing wildlife populations.
  • Explain a range of different methods used to determine the number of individuals in a wildlife population.
  • Discuss a range of different wildlife management techniques.
  • Explain potentials and limitations of legal and administrative initiatives, in the pursuance of more effective wildlife management.
  • Examine a specific wildlife management case of interest to the student.

What You Will Do

  • Contact (either in person, email or by telephone) an organisation involved in wildlife management such as a National Park, wildlife reserve, zoo, etc to research their wildlife management program.
    • In your locality, find out about one pest species of wildlife and one endangered or threatened species of native wildlife. Research what happened to make these animals pests or endangered.
    • Visit a natural area in your locality and observe the organisms in the area and their interactions with each other and the environment.
    • Explain what trophic levels are and how energy flows between them.
  • Define habitat, biome, vegetation formation and feeding radius.
  • Visit a zoo, wildlife park, game reserve, pet shop, fauna sanctuary or other place where wild animals are kept in captivity to observe the animals in their captive surroundings and compare these with their native surroundings.
  • Identify a predator-prey relationship between two species in a local ecosystem and make predictions about changes to this relationship.
  • Research the difference between r and K strategists in animals.
  • Design a wildlife survey using a suitable sampling technique. Write this survey up as a mini scientific report containing an
    • Abstract/Project Summary, Methods and materials section, Results/Discussion and Conclusion.
  • Research the success of one wildlife program where wildlife have been bred in captivity and then released.
  • Draw up a table that lists the advantages and disadvantages of allowing hunting to proceed in game parks where the animals being hunted are native to the area.
  • Telephone or contact a wildlife management agency in your area to determine the relevant local, regional, national and international laws that apply to wildlife in your locality.
  • Prepare a report on a population of animals surveyed during the course.

Course Contributors

The following academics were involved in the development and/or updating of this course.

Dr. Gareth Pearce

Veterinary scientist and surgeon with expertise in agriculture and environmental science, with over 25 years of experience in teaching and research in agriculture, veterinary medicine, wildlife ecology and conservation in the UK, Australia and New Zealand

Alison Pearce

University Lecturer, Quality Assurance Manager, Writer and Research Technician. Alison originally graduated with an honors degree in science from university and beyond that has completed post graduate qualifications in education and eco-tourism. She has m

Peter Douglas

Over 50 years experience in Agriculture and wildlife management.
Former university lecturer, Wildlife park manager, Animal breeder, Equestrian.
Peter has both wide ranging experience in animal science, farming and tourism management, and continues to ap

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