New Mexico Game and Fish is now hiring ‘professional bear huggers’
By Zoe Sottile, CNN
Bear lovers rejoice: The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish is hiring for “professional bear huggers.”
The department posted an adorable job listing on Facebook on Monday, featuring precious snaps of conservation officers cuddling baby bears.
Unfortunately, a love of bears is not the only qualification you’ll need to become a conservation officer. The job listing with the formal title of the position specifies candidates should have a bachelor’s degree in “biological sciences, police science or law enforcement, natural resources conservation, ecology, or related fields.”
Interested applicants “must have ability to hike in strenuous conditions, have the courage to crawl into a bear den, and have the trust in your coworkers to keep you safe during the process,” wrote the department.
The photos are from a research project in Northern New Mexico, according to the Facebook post. They added they “do not recommend crawling into bear dens” and “all bears were handled safely under supervision.”
“Not all law enforcement field work is this glamorous, but we would love for you to join the team where you can have the experience of a lifetime,” added the department.
Applications for the next class of conservation officer trainees are open until March 30, according to the post.
The job duties include a lot more than just bear-hugging, according to the job listing. Each conservation officer is responsible for “enforcing the game and fish laws” and also “educates the public about wildlife and wildlife management, conducts wildlife surveys, captures ‘problem animals,’ investigates wildlife damage to crops and property, assists in wildlife relocations and helps to develop new regulations.”
Black bears are New Mexico’s state animal. Estimates place the population at around 6,000 bears, according to a publication from the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish.
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