Fish Farmer

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					Fish Farmer

          The Work

          Fish farming involves breeding shellfish, and fish such as salmon and trout, for the food industry.
          Some fish farmers rear other types of fish to stock lakes and rivers for angling purposes, or for
          ornamental ponds.

          You could be involved in various areas of fish farming, including:
              q   breeding fish by hatching eggs from adult stock
              q   buying in young fish and rearing them
              q   feeding fish by hand or by filling hoppers that feed them automatically
              q   monitoring the health of fish
              q   grading fish or shellfish by size and moving them to bigger tanks or other holding units
              q   making regular checks on water temperature and oxygen content
              q   cleaning filters and screens that trap leaves and other debris
              q   treating water before releasing it back into the river
              q   harvesting fish when ready for sale
              q   selling fish to the public and/or trade customers
              q   maintaining buildings, equipment and fish habitats.

          As most fish farms only have a few staff, managers usually do many of the above tasks, as well as
          supervising fish farm workers.
          Some fish farms provide facilities for angling.


          Entry Requirements

          You do not necessarily need qualifications to get into fish farming, but there are full-time courses
          you can take before looking for work, which will give you some of the skills and knowledge you will
          need for the job. Courses are offered at colleges specialising in horticulture and agriculture. You
          may need relevant experience to get on to some courses - you should check with colleges for their
          requirements.

          You could complete BTEC Level 2 Certificate/Extended Certificate/Diploma in Fish Husbandry.
          You may need to collect feed or equipment and deliver fish to local buyers, so a driving licence
          would be useful.

          If you want to start as a manager or assistant manager, you may need a higher education
          qualification. These are available at a very small number of universities and include SQA
          HNCs/HNDs (available in Scotland), foundation degrees and degrees.

          To search for HNDs, foundation degrees and degrees, visit the UCAS website. Please check with
          colleges or universities for exact entry requirements.
            q UCAS



          In Scotland you may be able to enter through an apprenticeship. For information see the Modern
          Apprenticeship website.
            q Modern Apprenticeships (Scotland)




          Hours

          As fish farms operate seven days a week, your hours may include early mornings, evenings and
          weekends, perhaps on a rota system.

          Fish farms are often in isolated areas. You would work outdoors in all weather conditions, and may
          need to do heavy lifting, standing, bending and carrying.


          Skills and Knowledge
              q   practical skills like woodwork, welding and basic plumbing
              q   the ability to work on your own and as part of a small team
              q   the ability to adapt to new technology
              q   swimming ability
              q   business, communication and organisational skills.




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Fish Farmer

          Training and Development

          Once you are working as a fish farmer you could complete Institute of Fisheries Management (IFM)
          home-study courses leading to the following qualifications:
            q Certificate in Fisheries Management

            q Diploma in Fisheries Management.



          See the training page of the IFM website for details.
           q Institute of Fisheries Management - training page



          You could also complete BTEC Level 3 Certificate/Subsidiary Diploma/Diploma/Extended Diploma
          in Fish Management.

          You can also study for relevant postgraduate qualifications at some colleges and universities. Visit
          the Hobsons Postgrad website to search for courses.
            q Hobsons Postgrad



          In Scotland you may be able to work towards SVQ levels 2 and 3 in Fisheries Management.


          More Information

          Institute of Fisheries Management (IFM)
          22 Rushworth Avenue
          West Bridgford
          Nottingham
          NG2 7LF
          Tel: 0115 982 2317
          www.ifm.org.uk

          Lantra
          Lantra House
          Stoneleigh Park
          Nr Coventry
          Warwickshire
          CV8 2LG
          Tel: 0845 707 8007
          www.lantra.co.uk

          afuturein.com
          www.afuturein.com

          British Trout Association
          The Rural Centre
          West Mains
          Ingliston
          EH8 8NZ
          Tel: 0131 472 4080
          www.britishtrout.co.uk




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Fish Farmer

          Opportunities

          Although you could find work at fish farms all over the UK, they are mainly concentrated in
          Scotland, and to a lesser extent in North Yorkshire and the south of England. Salmon sea cage
          farms are located in Scotland, the Shetland Isles and on the west coast of Ireland. Job
          opportunities are quite scarce, with strong competition for the well-established farms.

          Other employers include the Environment Agency, private estates, angling organisations, and
          garden centres that specialise in aquatics.

          On a large fish farm you may be able to progress to supervisor or manager, although you may
          need to move between farms.

          If you can find a suitable location and raise enough capital, you could start your own fish farm.
          Freelance work could be another option, for example acting as a consultant or providing sickness
          or holiday cover.

          You may find the following links useful for job vacancies and further reading (links open a new
          window):

          Fish Farmer
          British Trout Association (jobs page)
          Environment Agency
          Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)
          We do not accept responsibility for the content of external sites.


          Income
              q   Fish farm workers can earn between £13,000 and £18,000 a year.
              q   Managers can earn around £38,000.

          A house or caravan, and use of a vehicle, may be included.

          Figures are intended as a guideline only.


          Related Profiles
          Farm Manager
          Fishing Vessel Deckhand
          Fishing Vessel Skipper
          Gamekeeper




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