What’s it all about then?
In your role as an Assistant Fish Farm Site Manager, you will support the Fish Farm Manager with all of the day to day operations on site.
There will also be occasions when you will have to deputise for the Fish Farm Manager as and when needed.
You’ll very likely have several years experience of fish farming techniques and a good understanding of fish husbandry.
Your responsibilities will involve the entire process, from the breeding of juvenile fish right through to harvesting and delivery to customers.
What might I be doing?
As an Assistant Fish Farm Manager you are likely to have the following responsibilities:
- Supervising staff when the Fish Farm Manager is not onsite
- Maintaining a safe working environment and ensuring all employees work safely
- Ensuring environmentally friendly work practices
- Understanding feed and stock management
- Harvesting and grading planning
- Keeping accurate computerised records
- Assisting the Manager to perform their role effectively
What will be expected of me?
Obviously you will have a good knowledge of all the processes connected with the fish farming business, coupled with administrative and business skills; these will of course develop as you gain experience in the role or as a Fish Farmer worker.
You’ll have to be able to work flexibly in order to meet the needs of a 24/7 operation.
You’ll need to be physically fit, practically natured and happy working outdoors in all types of weather, getting the best results from your team.
What can I expect?
The type of work you’re going to be doing requires a 24/7 operation throughout the year, so your working hours will reflect this with flexibility being required during particularly busy phases.
In a large firm you may work on a rota system.
You can expect to be doing a lot of lifting and hauling in this role.
What about the pay?
An Assistant Farm Manager could expect between £23.5k and £25.5k
Fish Farm Managers will earn up to £40k with more on offer if you become a senior manager in a large firm.
You may also be provided with suitable accommodation near to your job.
Please note that these figures are for your guidance only and you should always check for up to date figures before making any decisions.
What qualifications do I need to get in?
To start as a trainee or assistant manager in a fish farm you will very likely need a degree in a relevant subject such as aquaculture, fisheries management, or marine biology etc.
If you commence employment at a lower level and in a smaller scale operation you may find that a relevant degree is useful but not essential; practical skills and experience are considered more important.
Employers will ask for good 5 GCSE passes however (A*-C).
There are also a number of short courses you can take which will help with your employment at any level – an example is the Certificate/Diploma in Fisheries Management.
If you are Scottish based you could also consider a level 3 Apprenticeship.
Where would I get these qualifications?
Several universities offer Aquaculture related courses; these tend to be either based in Scotland or in coastal locations – for instance Stirling and Bangor.
The Institute of Aquaculture at the University of Stirling is the only one of its kind in the UK and one of very few in the world, so this would be a good starting point if you’re thinking about a career based on fish farming.
With regard to the Certificate and Diploma courses mentioned above, these can be taken via Correspondence courses offered by the Institute of Fisheries Management.
What about further training?
Training is often provided on the job, although many employers will expect entrants to have reasonable technical skills (acquired through work experience), as well as a sound academic grounding in the subject.
The training opportunities available often depend on the size of the fish farm.
You could consider undertaking a post graduate level qualification such as the MSc in Aquaculture: Sustainable Aquaculture offered by the University of Stirling.
This might also be a useful starting point if you’re coming into the industry with a non-specific degree.
Anything else I might need to know?
Yes, fish farming is the type of job where pre-entry experience is extremely important and you could gain this by looking for holiday employment – this will also show whether or not you are actually suited to this sort of work.
Also, please note that aquaculture is wider than purely fish farming and also includes the culture of species such as turtles, crocodiles and algae!
See also the link for Fish Farming Manager for more information on this job.