What Jobs Can You Get With a Fisheries Degree?

Fisheries science is the study of aquatic ecosystems and fish behavior. Fisheries jobs can be found in just about any environment: mountain lakes, river systems, research laboratories, corporate offices, ships, and even under the ocean. This is a diverse field which offers exciting opportunities all over the world. These professionals are involved in preserving aquatic habitats, promoting intelligent fishing practices, understanding how fish live, and protecting consumers by regulating the seafood industry. Here are six fisheries jobs you can get with your fisheries related degree.

Fisheries Technicianscareers in fisheries

Fisheries Technicians work under the direction of biologists. In a field job, they collect samples and record data. If working in a zoo or aquarium their duties will include water sampling, observation, habitat maintenance, and day-to-day care of animals. In most cases, a bachelor’s degree is needed to work as a fishery technician. The expected salary is between $25,000 and $30,000.

Fishery Biologists

Fishery biologists work in many different capacities. They are hired by state and federal wildlife parks and other agencies, government or privately operated fish hatcheries, research companies, non-profit organizations, zoos and aquariums. They are also hired by industrial fishing companies to oversee industry regulation compliance. Fishery biologists earn an average of $60,000, but this can increase greatly depending on where they are employed.

Fish Management Supervisors

Fish management supervisors direct the efforts of fish hatcheries as needed to control and maintain fish populations. They evaluate the strength of ecosystems and oversee fisheries research projects. This data is used to prepare environmental impact statements and formulate statewide aquatic management programs. These professionals hold a master’s or Ph.D. degree and earn an average of $92,000.

Hatchery Manager

Fisheries jobs

A fish hatchery.

Hatcheries managers oversee the operations of state and private hatcheries. They direct workers in catching and spawning fish, incubating eggs and releasing the adults in the wild or processing them for consumption. They maintain state and federal regulations in regard to wild population management and food standards. Hatchery managers earn approximately $48,000 per year, and they have at least a bachelor’s degree.

Fisheries Observer

Fisheries observers are employed by state and federal governments and work on commercial fishing boats. They are responsible for accurately recording the number and species of animals caught, their sizes, how many are released, and other statistical data. Fishery observers must remain with the ship for entire fishing trips which can range from a few hours to a couple of weeks. Many of these jobs are seasonal. The average fisheries observer earns $50,000.

Fisheries Officer

Fisheries officers enforce laws that pertain to recreational and commercial fishing. They may work in freshwater or saltwater locations. In addition to law enforcement, they also survey fish populations, promote conservation, and educate the public. Fisheries officers must be knowledgeable in fishing and boating laws. They perform boat safety inspections, teach boating classes, and promote water safety. The average salary for a fishery officer is $40,000. This career choice requires a minimum of a bachelor’s degree. Law enforcement training is also required by some agencies.



Fishery workers report higher than average job satisfaction. Anyone interested in working in fisheries science will need to earn an advanced degree. Most entry level jobs require a bachelor’s degree. Advanced positions often require a master’s or Ph.D. degree. In addition to obtaining a fishery or marine biology education, these professionals are trained in water safety, boat operation, and diving.

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