Working and Careers in Water and Aquatic Science
A benthic ecologist works to study aquatic life that lives on the bottom surfaces of Texas’ aquatic ecosystems.
Photo credit: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
There are thousands of invertebrate species in aquatic systems, from mountain top headwaters to the greatest depths of the oceans. A benthic ecologist studies the invertebrates and the communities of invertebrates that live on the bottoms of streams, lakes, rivers, estuaries, bays, and the ocean. This life is often called benthos. A benthic ecologist does research experiments, counts and measurements, look at the effects of pollution, and determine the health of invertebrate communities. Benthic ecologists usually have a master’s or doctorate degree in biology or ecology.