8 Jobs In The Fishing Industry To Consider (With Salaries)

Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 19 January 2023

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

A career in fishing may interest those who like the idea of working offshore. There are also several options in the fishing industry for people who prefer to work onshore. Discovering the different roles you can pursue in this sector can help you in making informed choices regarding a career in fishing. In this article, we discuss various jobs in the fishing industry, provide their salaries and job duties and offer some useful tips for starting a career in this industry.

What Are Some Of The Types Of Jobs In The Fishing Industry?

There are various types of jobs in the fishing industry, including roles that involve managing, supervising, or assisting in the gathering, processing, and distribution of fish. There are some roles that involve working offshore and entail spending long periods of time on a fishing boat. As part of a crew on a fish boat, you may sail in the ocean or freshwater lakes and catch fish, crabs, lobster or other shellfish. There are also some positions that do not demand you spend time offshore, such as working in to prepare, pack, ship or inspect fresh fish and seafood.

Related: What Are Career Opportunities And How To Choose The Right One

8 Jobs In The Fishing Industry

Here is a list of eight roles for you to review if you are thinking about pursuing a career in the fishing industry:

1. Boat Rigger

National average salary: ₹17,326 per month

Primary duties: A boat rigger, sometimes called a marine rigger, works with the pulleys on a boat and other gear to adjust sails. Though most fishing boats are large ships that do not have sails, sometimes smaller fishing ventures use sailboats to navigate smaller channels and canals. In these cases, a rigger is an integral crew member and ensures the vessel remains in safe working order. On larger ships that do not have sails, a rigger may concentrate on the pulley systems of nets, cages, and crates used to catch fish.

2. Fish Hatchery Technician

National average salary: ₹15,423 per month

Primary duties: A fish hatchery technician manages the fish raised in an artificial hatchery. A fish hatchery catches and oversees the reproduction of a wide variety of fish. This may include cold-water fish such as trout and warm-water fish like bass, depending on where they work. A technician in a fish hatchery handles fish deliveries and allocates them to the appropriate holding tank. They are typically required to use heavy equipment.

3. Fisher

National average salary: ₹18,022 per month

Primary duties: A fisherman is a member of the crew on a fishing boat who is responsible for operating fishing equipment or hydraulic equipment to secure daily catches. They typically work as part of a team, placing nets, lines, and cages to catch fish and shellfish and later hoisting them back on the boat, washing the fish, and storing it on ice. Fishers are also responsible for loading and unloading fishing equipment and freshly caught fish. Some of their other duties may include making sure the fishing equipment is in good condition and carrying out any essential repairs.

4. Fish Cutter

National average salary: ₹14,335 per month

Primary duties: A fish cutter in the fishing industry is a skilled professional that prepares seafood for distribution and sale. This may include cleaning, de-boning, filleting, and inspecting fish or shellfish before packaging so that it is ready for shipping to stores and distributors. Fish cutters usually have expert knowledge of different types of fish, shellfish, and other seafood. They also typically have excellent knife skills and a deep understanding of food handling safety protocol.

5. Fishing Boat Captain

National average salary: ₹25,942 per month

Primary duties: A fishing boat captain is the main authority on a fishing boat. They are responsible for ensuring the crew maintains a daily catch quota of fish, prawns or other shellfish. They may navigate the boat through lakes, rivers, oceans, or bays and use their expert knowledge of water to direct the boat and monitor it for safety. They typically decide the best location to ask for nets or cages.

The captain usually employs and manages the boat's crew and solves any problems that may arise. Their duties may include logging the day-to-day activities of the crew, monitoring the maintenance of the living quarters below the deck, and ensuring the safety of those on board. They also use radio equipment to communicate with those on land and on seas, such as coast guards and maritime officials.

6. Distribution Specialist

National average salary: ₹41,992 per month

Primary duties: A distribution specialist typically works in a factory or warehouse receiving, sorting, and distributing equipment and shipment materials. In the fishing industry, a distribution specialist usually works in distribution centers preparing seafood for delivery to supermarkets or restaurants. They typically work with others as members of a team. Some of their other duties may involve operating heavy machinery and having an advanced understanding of food safety and storage procedures.

7. Deckhand

National average salary: ₹21,444 per month

Primary duties: A deckhand is responsible for maintaining the deck and below-deck quarters of a fishing boat, and they typically follow a strict schedule of routine cleaning and meal preparation. Their duties may include cleaning, sanitizing, stocking, and organizing the fishing equipment and supplies below deck. Deckhands may also attend to the captain's quarters and cook meals for the fishing boat staff. They also assist the crew with transporting goods, including loading and unloading the products. Deckhands usually receive training or an apprenticeship from fishers on the job.

8. Fisheries Manager

National average salary: ₹10,32,430 per year

Primary duties: A fisheries manager works at a fishery, which is a more industrial environment that typically consists of large ponds, pools or tanks that store fish. A manager in a fishery supervises the daily operations of the fishery. This may include overseeing the fish's growth, handling equipment, and preparing fish food. They may also communicate with other managers in affiliated fisheries.

Some managers may supervise multiple teams, and their role may entail frequent travel to other fisheries. Their duties also include management duties such as allocating tasks to staff, training new employees, scheduling rotas and dealing with any issues that may arise, such as a low-quality harvest. Though the majority of fisheries are indoors, some may be outside, which may mean working in different weather conditions.

Related: How To Find Your Desired Career Path

Tips For Starting A Career In The Fishing Industry

Here are some tips you can follow to start a career in the fishing industry:

Evaluate your skills

Before you establish which job in the fishing industry you are most interested in, it is helpful to evaluate your skills and consider how they may apply to a future career. For instance, if you enjoy working with others as part of a team and have a good level of physical fitness, you may enjoy a job as a fisherman. If you have natural leadership abilities, then a role of a boat captain may be suitable for you.

Related: How To Determine What To Do With Your Life

Understand the demands

Although a very rewarding career, the fishing industry can also be demanding. It is important to consider that working offshore may entail spending long periods on a ship, which means you may miss out on some holidays, time with family, and other significant events in your personal life. It is also crucial to know that spending a long period at sea can be physically demanding.

Related: Utilise Your Aptitude To Find The Right Career

Be aware of the risks

The open sea can be an uncertain environment. Working on a fishing boat as a fisherman or deckhand may come with certain physical risks. It is essential that you consider the risks and ensure you understand the key safety protocols to minimize risk.

Related: What Are Careers On The Sea? (With Definition And Examples)

Contemplate your career objective

Deliberating your long-term career goals can help you select an entry-level position in the fishing industry that is well-suited to your professional aspirations. For instance, if you aspire to become the captain of a fishing boat, then finding work as a deckhand can help you obtain useful practical experience and build a network. If your career aspiration is to become a distribution specialist, gaining an entry-level role as a fish cutter may give you the experience you require in seafood preparation and distribution.

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at the time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organization and a candidate's experience, academic background, and location.

Explore more articles