Can Women Ecologists Have It All? Combining motherhood and a career in Ecology

Ever wondered about balancing motherhood and a career in the environmental services? We spoke to our Principal Ecologist, Eleanor Hayter, about her experience of combining motherhood and her career in ecology.

Eleanor Hayter
Written by:

Eleanor Hayter

July 28, 2022
Principal Ecologist


I joined Ecus six years ago as a Consultant Ecologist. Before joining I had felt stuck in my job, not being given opportunities to progress in my career.

When I first joined I worked from a small office with only three ecologists in the team.  It was scary as it was fast paced, but such an amazing learning curve. Fast forward six years, we have moved to a bigger office and have 20+ ecologists.  I am now helping run the team and work as a Principal Ecologist.

In the six years since I joined the company I have also married and had two children. Having children in this industry did worry me; it is well known that ecologists work long, late hours often away from home. As a woman with a family, I wondered would I have to sacrifice my career while my children were young, and would I see ecologists without families advance quicker than myself?  Luckily, I haven’t found this to be true working at Ecus. They have allowed me the flexibility and support I have needed, while providing me with amazing opportunities to focus on areas of work I love.

Eleanor Hayter

I was promoted to Senior Ecologist during my first pregnancy, and nine months after returning from a year on maternity leave, I was promoted again. I now work as a Principal Ecologist who has a Full Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management Membership. I feel like this company recognises and rewards hard working, loyal employees and that is why I’m glad to be part of such a growing and successful company.

Ecus are proud to support women ecologists in their professional journey and to offer them the necessary support and flexibility. It is also worth noting the other support available to ecologists – The British Ecological Society have also run mentoring schemes since 2009. The Women in Ecology mentoring scheme paired up women, both from the UK and internationally, to provide them with support professionally and with work-life balance.

Eleanor Hayter Kids
Eleanor’s children are following in their mum’s footsteps when it comes to bugs and nature!