Animal Scientist  What They Do

Just the Facts


Conducts research in the genetics, nutrition, reproduction, growth, and development of domestic farm animals.

This career is part of the Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources cluster Animal Systems pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Communicates research findings to the scientific community, producers, and the public.
  • Studies effects of management practices, processing methods, feed, or environmental conditions on quality and quantity of animal products, such as eggs and milk.
  • Studies nutritional requirements of animals and nutritive values of animal feed materials.
  • Conducts research concerning animal nutrition, breeding, or management to improve products or processes.
  • Advises producers about improved products and techniques that could enhance their animal production efforts.
  • Researches and controls animal selection and breeding practices to increase production efficiency and improve animal quality.
  • Develops improved practices in feeding, housing, sanitation, or parasite and disease control of animals.
  • Crossbreeds animals with existing strains or cross strains to obtain new combinations of desirable characteristics.
  • Determines genetic composition of animal populations and heritability of traits, using principles of genetics.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 20 lbs., sometimes up to 50 lbs. You might do a lot of lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling.
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation requires being outside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Animal Behaviorist -- Studies and observes animals' biology, anatomy and environment and may determine causes of behavioral issues and create plans to manipulate the animal toward more desirable behavior, or to ensure animals are properly cared for in a particular environment.
  • Animal Nutrition Consultant --