Fish Biologist Jobs
As aquaculture is essentially dealing with the growth of biological organisms, the need for a fish biologist is critical throughout the industry.
The biologist is an important expert in all aspects on aquaculture, from understanding and managing the growth of aquatic species in hatcheries and farms to communicating the impact those operations will have on local surroundings.
Biologists are often relied upon to study wild or man-made fishery systems and analytically relay his/her finding through many different methods. Sampling surveys, water quality determinations, environmental impact studies and fishery operation inspections are just a few responsibilities a biologist partakes in.
Biologists often serve as the local experts or liaisons between the aquaculture company and regional government operations or private corporations on a number of different topics. Biologists must apply their scientific knowledge to monitoring the health of the aquatic species being grown and recommending how to improve an operation’s efficiency.
A fish biologist also is an important role in aquaculture research. Studying fish genetics and the impact many different factors, such as available nutrition and environmental surroundings, have on a species ability to survive and withstand disease generally fall under the biologist’s responsibility.
A fish biologist does not necessarily require a college degree in biology, but that is the most common educational route taken. A bachelor’s degree in any natural resource or ecology field from an accredited university is also applicable in many situations. Having a master’s degree in either a relevant degree program or coupled with pertinent field experience is not necessary, but has become more frequent and will greatly increase an applicant’s marketability. Achieving a master’s degree once hired is a typical development path taken.
Salaries generally start around US$40,000 for applicants immediately out of school or those with very little experience. Salaries often extend to US$70,000 with greater amounts of pertinent experience and demonstrated abilities.
Hiring companies often look for biologists with experience and knowledge in local, state or federal fish regulations and requirements, including necessary license and permitting operations.
The fish biologist must be able to work in a wide range of conditions, beginning with field analysis and collecting samples in local rivers, lakes or oceans. A fish biologist is often the key member fulfilling partnership responsibilities on a team of individuals, both within and outside a fishery operation. Therefore, the biologist must have excellent communication skills to efficiently relay data and reports to superiors or members from those federal, state or private entities.