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How to become a Park Ranger

Park Rangers are part of a team who work on the ground to monitor, preserve, and maintain State or national parks, scenic areas, historic sites, nature reserves, recreation areas or conservation reserves. They are guided by policies and laws and act to enforce those where necessary.

If you are passionate about conservation and education, love being outdoors and are great at communicating, this could be an ideal career to explore further.


About you:


  • Excellent communication and leadership skills
  • Physically fit, practical and resilient
  • Passionate and well informed
  • Flexible approach to work
  • Great customer service and conflict resolution
  • Enjoy outdoors work in all weather
  • Organisational, project management and teamwork skills


The job:


  • Patrol, monitor, and assess natural and recreational areas
  • Identify and eradicate invasive and pest species
  • Identify and protect endangered species
  • Promote and maintain the parks assets
  • Work to control fire, flood and other damage
  • Build relationships and work co-operatively with indigenous owners and communities
  • Grant permits, enforce laws and assist with research and volunteer projects
  • Maintain and develop visitor facilities, boundaries and signage
  • Respond to emergency situations
  • Deliver information, reports, and education to visitors, schools and stakeholders


Lifestyle Impact: Medium


  • Part Time opportunities: Low – only 19% of Park Rangers work part-time (source: labourmarketinsights.gov.au).
  • Average hours for full-time workers: 41 hours a week, which is average (source: labourmarketinsights.gov.au).
  • Park Rangers’ salary (average) $80,000* per year (Source: com.au). *Salaries vary depending on your skills and experience.
  • Future career growth: Strong (Source: labourmarketinsights.gov.au).
  • You’ll likely be working weekends, holidays and other maybe even sometimes at night, and you’ll need to be confident living and working in remote areas.


Park Rangers are most in demand in these locations:


This is a small industry, employing only 2,500 workers in 2016 although numbers are increasing annually (source: labourmarketinsights.gov.au). There are opportunities available for Park Rangers across Australia and most of the roles are with Government Agencies.

Working as a Park Ranger you’ll need to be active in the area you’re employed which may mean living away from home or relocating, this may be to remote and regional areas.


How to become a Park Ranger in Australia


You can work as a Park Ranger without any formal qualifications Park Ranger in Australia, but a VET or other qualification in land or park management for example may improve your employment prospects.


Step 1 – Complete your high school certificate and consider taking subjects such as English, Biology, Chemistry, Geography,  and History.


Step 2 – Consider studying a relevant qualification to boost your skills and employability. You could study a course such as a Certificate III in Conservation and Ecosystem Management.


Step 3 – Volunteer to work on projects in park settings, get work experience with Park Rangers, or undertake your own projects locally. Tour guiding, gardening and landscaping, zoo keeping, seasonal firefighting and tourist information centre work could also provide you with valuable skills.


Step 4 – If you’re really passionate consider a university degree such as

Bachelor of Environmental Management,

Or Bachelor of Environmental Science (Wildlife and Conservation Biology)


Step 5 – Once you have some experience under your belt, you can move into higher positions such as Ranger in Charge or more policy and planning positions within the organisation.


Find out more here –






Similar Careers to Park Ranger


Conservation Officer

Environmental Consultants

Environmental Scientists


Tour Guide


Find out more about alternative careers.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


What do Park Rangers do?


Park Rangers work to protect and conserve ecosystems, landscapes, natural resources, ecosystem, and the plant and animal life that live there. They also educate and help people who visit the park and ensure that laws and rules are stuck to by visitors.


Which industries employ Park Rangers?


Most Park Rangers work for Government Organisations, state and federal, however some work for private land or business owners too such as tourism operators.


Do I need to go to university to become a Park Ranger?


No, but you may consider undertaking a relevant VET qualification or undertaking work experience to help boost your employment prospects.


Where do Park Rangers work?


Park Rangers are employed all across Australia, from suburban parks and recreational areas to the most remote National Parks.


What are 3 things I can do right now to help me become a Park Ranger?


If you’re in high school and you’d like to find out if a career as a Park Ranger is right for you, here’s a few things you could do right now:

  1. Volunteering is great way to gain valuable experience and develop your network of contacts.
  2. Get your driver’s license, courses in first aid and CPR could be useful too. If you’d like to work in marine parks a commercial coxswain’s certificate and open water diver’s certificate could be useful too.
  3. Gain practical outdoor skills such as hiking, mountaineering, survival skills, bush tucker, that could make you a more competitive candidate.

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