Fisheries adviser

Fisheries adviser article illustration


A fisheries adviser is a professional who provides guidance and expertise in the management and sustainable development of fisheries. This role involves working with government agencies, environmental organizations, and fishing communities to ensure responsible and environmentally friendly practices in the harvesting and utilization of aquatic resources.

Fisheries advisers typically perform the following tasks:

  • Conduct assessments of fish stocks, analyzing population dynamics, migration patterns, and environmental conditions to estimate sustainable harvesting levels.
  • Develop and implement fisheries management plans, considering ecological, economic, and social factors to promote sustainable practices.
  • Stay informed about and ensure compliance with local, national, and international fishing regulations and quotas to prevent overfishing and maintain ecosystem health.
  • Collaborate with fishing communities, providing advice on sustainable fishing practices, gear selection, and the importance of adhering to conservation measures.
  • Advise on responsible aquaculture practices, including site selection, disease prevention, and environmental impact assessments for aquaculture operations.
  • Conduct research on fisheries-related issues, collect and analyze data, and disseminate findings to inform decision-making processes.
  • Assess the environmental impact of fishing activities and aquaculture operations, recommending mitigation measures to minimize negative effects.
  • Explore and recommend the use of technology in fisheries management, such as satellite monitoring, electronic logbooks, and data analytics for improved decision-making.
  • Provide training and educational programs to fishermen, fisheries managers, and other stakeholders on sustainable fishing practices, conservation, and regulatory compliance.
  • Collaborate with government agencies, environmental groups, scientists, and industry stakeholders to develop and implement collaborative solutions for sustainable fisheries management.
  • Conduct economic analyses of fisheries activities, considering the socioeconomic impacts on fishing communities and recommending strategies for economic diversification.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to fisheries adviser:

fisheries specialist
marine fisheries consultant
marine fisheries scientist
fisheries consultant
marine fisheries biologist
fisheries sustainability consultant
senior fisheries specialist
senior fisheries biologist
fisheries biologist
marine fisheries adviser
fisheries scientist

Working conditions

Fisheries advisers work in various settings, including government agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), research institutions, and consulting firms. The role may involve fieldwork, frequent travel to fishing communities, and collaboration with diverse stakeholders.

Minimum qualifications

To become a fisheries adviser, a bachelor’s or master’s degree in fisheries science, marine biology, environmental science, or a related field is typically required. Practical experience gained through internships, fieldwork, or research projects contributes to the development of fisheries advisers. Continuous learning, staying updated on fisheries management strategies and regulations, and engaging with the broader scientific and fisheries communities enhance the effectiveness of fisheries advisers. Strong communication and interpersonal skills are crucial for building relationships with diverse stakeholders and promoting sustainable fisheries practices.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Fisheries adviser is a Skill level 4 occupation.

Fisheries adviser career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to fisheries adviser.

water quality analyst
hydrographic surveyor
natural resources consultant
environmental geologist

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of fisheries adviser.

  • Fisheries management: The principles, methods and equipment used in population management applied to fisheries: the concept of catch, by-catch, fishing effort, maximum sustainable yield, different sampling methods and how to use sampling material.
  • Fish identification and classification: The processes which allow the identification and classification of fish.
  • Water policies: Have a solid understanding of policies, strategies, institutions, and regulations concerning water.
  • Environmental legislation: The environmental policies and legislation applicable in a certain domain.
  • Fish biology: The study of fish, shellfish or crustacean organisms, categorized into many specialised fields that cover their morphology, physiology, anatomy, behaviour, origins and distribution.
  • Fisheries legislation: The study and analysis of different fisheries management approaches taking into account international treaties and industry norms in order to analyze fisheries management regulations. 

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of fisheries adviser.

  • Prepare surveying report: Write a survey report containing information on property boundaries, the height and depth of the terrain, etc..
  • Provide advice to hatcheries: Provide recommendations for the installation and well functioning of hatcheries.
  • Advise on soil and water protection: Advise on the effects of soil and water management practices in controlling pollutant loss, nitrate leaching and reduce soil erosion.
  • Analyse business objectives: Study data according to business strategies and objectives and make both short-term and long-term strategic plans.
  • Inspect fish eggs: Inspect fish eggs. Remove dead, unviable, and off-colour eggs using a suction syringe.
  • Study fish migration: Perform research and study the fish migration and movement, considering environmental factors such as the influence of water salinity.
  • Process collected survey data: Analyse and interpret survey data acquired from various sources e.g. satellite surveys, aerial photography and laser measurement systems.
  • Estimate fishery status: Recognise the basic biological data to estimate the status of a fishery. Recognise the captured species by simple ocular observation and compare the amount and size of catches to those of previous periods.
  • Assess site production potential: Assess the production potential of a site. Assess the trophic resources of a natural site and assess the advantages and constraints of a site.
  • Assess fish health condition: Identify and prepare fish conditions for the safe application of treatments.
  • Develop business case: Gather relevant information in order to come up with a well-written and well-structured document that provides the trajectory of a given project.
  • Advise on environmental remediation: Advise on the development and implementation of actions which aim to remove sources of pollution and contamination from the environment.
  • Support fishery training procedures: Support colleagues progress in their line of work by increasing their job specific know-how.
  • Conduct research before survey: Acquire information about property and its boundaries before the survey by searching legal records, survey records, and land” titles.
  • Monitor hatchery production: Monitor and maintain hatchery production, monitoring stocks and movements.
  • Apply fishery biology to fishery management: Manage fisheries resources by applying specific techniques based on fishery biology.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of fisheries adviser. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Mathematics: Mathematics is the study of topics such as quantity, structure, space, and change. It involves the identification of patterns and the formulation of new conjectures based on them. Mathematicians strive to prove the truth or falsity of these conjectures. There are many fields of mathematics, some of which are widely used for practical applications.
  • Surveying methods: Have an understanding of surveying methods, remote sensing methods and equipment.
  • Aquaculture industry: Understand the aquaculture industry, its designs and its installations.
  • Wildlife: Undomesticated animal species, as well as all plants, fungi and other organisms that grow or live wild in an area without being introduced by humans. Wildlife can be found in all ecosystems such as deserts, forests, rain forests, plains, grasslands and other areas including the most developed urban areas, all have distinct forms of wildlife. Handling of wildlife capture equipment.
  • Soil science: The field of science that studies soil as a natural resource, its characteristics, formation, and classification. It also examines the physical, biological, and chemical potential of soil.
  • Chemistry: The composition, structure, and properties of substances and the processes and transformations that they undergo; the uses of different chemicals and their interactions, production techniques, risk factors, and disposal methods.
  • Leadership principles: Set of traits and values that guide the actions of a leader with her/his employees and the company and provide direction throughout her/his career. These principles are also an important tool for self-evaluation to identify strengths and weaknesses, and seek self-improvement.
  • Plankton production: The methods, characteristics and equipment used to cultivate phytoplankton, microalgae and live prey such as rotifers or Artemia with advanced techniques.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of fisheries adviser. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Interpret scientific data to assess water quality: Analyse and interpret data like biological properties to know the quality of water.
  • Respond to changing situations in fishery: Act decisive and in time to unexpected and rapidly changing situations in fishery.
  • Monitor the use of resources in production: Observe and check the use of resources such as food, oxygen, energy, water in the production process.
  • Adapt production levels: Adapt current production levels and strive to improve the current production rates looking for economic gains and margins. Negotiate improvement with sales, dispatch and distribution departments.
  • Manage fisheries projects: Consult with contractors from both the governmental and private sectors in fisheries projects such as restoration efforts. Go over the proposed plans and provide expertise. Prepare applications for fisheries program grants. Provide technical assistance to civic fisheries projects. Study the impact of environmental changes on waters. Resolve complaints from the public. Prepare prescriptions to identify fisheries problems and recommend solutions.
  • Conduct underwater surveys: Conduct subaquatic surveys to measure and map the underwater topography and morphology of bodies of water in order to aid the planning of aquaculture projects, the construction of marine constructions, and the exploration of natural resources.

ISCO group and title

2132 – Farming, forestry and fisheries advisers

  1. Fisheries adviser – ESCO
  2. Featured image: Photo by Paul Einerhand on Unsplash
Last updated on January 15, 2024