Biosecurity Officer

Biosecurity Officer

Biosecurity officers are responsible for managing the control of introduced pest plants and animals, and trying to prevent new species entering New Zealand and becoming established. Their work can include inspecting and monitoring land, waterways, boats and planes; educating landowners and the public; and supervising pest destruction work.

It’s a job that suits people who love being outdoors, are confident and good at negotiation, and who are observant and responsible.

The main employers of biosecurity officers are:

  • Ministry for Primary Industries – responsible for inspecting arriving travellers at airports
  • Regional and district councils
  • Department of Conservation
  • Research institutes such as NIWA
  • Private companies that provide pest and disease management services

Your chances of getting a job as a biosecurity officer are relatively poor, as lots of people want to work outdoors and it’s a small industry where people often stay in their jobs for a long time. You can improve your chances by doing volunteer work in your local area or for the Department of Conservation.

Biosecurity officers generally earn:

  • $35-45,000 with one to three years’ experience
  • $45-65,000 with more than three years’ experience

Key tertiary qualifications include:

  • Bachelor of Science in Botany, Zoology, Ecology or Environmental Science
  • Employers may prefer you to have a postgraduate diploma or Master’s degree in Biosecurity, Ecological or Environmental Science

Required and recommended school subjects:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Maths
  • English
  • Geography


Careers New Zealand: Biosecurity Officer


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Biosecurity Officer: People who work in this role

  • Alice McNatty

    Biosecurity Officer, Alice McNatty at work

    Haley McCoskery

    Biosecurity Officer, Haley McCoskery at work

Biosecurity Officer: Companies that employ people in this job role

  • Ministry for Primary Industries
    Ministry for Primary Industries
    Hawke's Bay Regional Council
    Hawke's Bay Regional Council

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