Invasive Species Management

A career in invasive species research provides solutions for management of serious weeds and pest animals.

Many exotic animals and plants become invasive species if they manage to establish populations in new areas. Invasive species scientists research tools to prevent and detect new invasions, and construct strategic tools to strengthen integrated management strategies of major weeds, parasites and animal pests including insects, foxes, wild dogs, feral pigs, rodents, cane toads, feral cats and rabbits.

The primary focus for weed research includes weed ecology and plant competition as the basis for designing appropriate and effective weed management strategies, which place less reliance on herbicides. Weed management can be focused on Cropping systems, Pasture systems, Environmental systems, and Plant toxicology in relation to livestock.


Tasks common for Invasive Species Scientists
  • Design research-based solutions to reduce the impact invasive species and diseases pose to Australia’s industries, biodiversity, ecosystem services and urban environments
  • Design tools and countermeasures to help control and mitigate outbreaks of emerging diseases of agricultural plants and animals
  • Protect primary industries, environment and human health from pests and diseases by assessing the risks they pose, prioritising the pathways of entry and providing new technologies for surveillance and early response
  • Design and new technologies for detection, surveillance, diagnosis and response such as sensors for monitoring environmental conditions or tracking the movement of animals, plants and diseases
Some industries that employ Invasive Species Scientists
  • DPI – Biosecurity
  • Australian Government – Dept Environment and Energy
  • Australian Government – Dept of Agriculture and Water Resources
  • Research organisations
Aptitudes for this career

Have excellent oral, written communication and problem solving skills, and good negotiating skills. Have an aptitude to work well both independently and within a team, and the ability to remain calm and patient in high pressure situations.