Wildlife Biology & Conservation

Regular and Co-op 

banner stating "wildlife biology and conservation"

Understanding how we conserve organisms within an ecosystem by understanding the role they play in the ecosystem. 

Wildlife Biology and Conservation focuses on both the ecological and evolutionary factors that influence the sustainability of species and communities and an understanding of how these factors can be used to manage natural systems or species that are at risk or invasive.

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What's Unique?


The objective of the Wildlife Biology and Conservation major is to provide students with an integrated foundation in three disciplines necessary to understand the origins, interactions, and protection of plant and animal diversity: evolution, ecology, and conservation biology. The Wildlife Biology and Conservation curriculum reflects the current interdisciplinary nature of the study of plant and animal diversity that builds on the depth and breadth of expertise in the Department of Integrative Biology.

Hear about what University of Guelph students are up to in their courses.

Program Details 

This major will provide students with a unique interdisciplinary opportunity to study the causes, consequences, and conservation of plant and animal diversity. There is currently no other major in Canada that explicitly integrates ecology, evolution, and conservation into a 4-year major. This major also builds on the University of Guelph’s long-standing reputation in the areas of biology and natural resources management. Although there are a series of required courses associated with each of the ecology, evolution, and conservation core themes, the major offers a significant amount of flexibility from years 2-4 that allows students to focus on 1 or 2 streams. In their 4th year, students will take a 1.0 credit capstone course (BIOL*4110 Ecological Methods) that focuses on the development and execution of a research problem by building of the different skills students have acquired in each of these streams.

  • Ecological Methods
  • Wildlife conservation and Management
  • Natural Resource Policy Analysis
  • Conservation Biology

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Admission Requirements

~80-83%* average 

  • 12U English
  • Advanced Functions
  • 2 courses from: 12U Biology, Chemistry, Physics
  • 2 additional 12U or M courses

All three sciences are recommended

*Please note that admission cut-offs stated above is an approximate based on previous years applicant pool. This cut-off range will vary from year-to-year and can be higher or lower based on the applicant pool. Meeting the minimum average does not guarantee an offer of admission. Admissions averages are calculated using the six required courses.


You can expect to learn how to:

  • Recognize the origins and current methods of protection of plant and animal diversity.
  • Develop detailed knowledge of ecological and evolutionary factors that influence the persistence of species and communities.
  • Understand how to manage natural and impacted systems (e.g., invasive species, species at risk) and apply scientific approaches to adaptive management strategies in wildlife conservation.
  • Assess the complex interplay between science, socioeconomic factors and public opinion in the forging of public policy decisions and the value of interdisciplinary approaches to understanding complex problems in wildlife biology.
  • Gain “hands on” experience in the field working with plants and animals in a variety of ecosystems.

Career Options

Practical experience gained in lab, field and research courses, combined with knowledge of strategies for conservation, management and policy, will broaden future opportunities in this field.


Wildlife Biology and Conservation co-op is a five year program with four co-op work terms. The suggested sequencing of academic and work terms is below. 

WBC Coop work and academic schedule


What our Alumni are working as:

Bioinformatics Coordinator  |  Centre for Biodiversity Genomics

Research Technician  | Environment Canada

Wildlife Biologist   |  Royal Ontario Museum


College of Biological Science

Wildlife Biology and Conservation is suppoted by the College of Biological Science

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Research & Faculty

Find out more about the research and faculty involved in the Wildlife Biology and Conservation major.

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Course List

A complete listing of all courses required for this major can be found in the Schedule of Studies located in the undergraduate calendar.

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Questions about Admissions?  

General Inquiries 

Phone: (+1) 519-821-2130 
Office Hours: Monday - Friday: 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM

B.Sc. Specific Questions

Office Hours: Monday – Friday 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM (closed over lunch)