Fish Hatchery Management Education and Training Program Information

Students in fish hatchery management programs learn about ecological factors involved in aquaculture, such as water quality, and study topics related to fish health and hatchery operation to prepare for careers in both the public and private sectors.

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Essential Information

Fish hatchery managers work with fish and aquatics, including raising game and non-game fish. Training in this field is available through 2-year associate's degree programs in aquaculture science and 4-year bachelor's degree programs in fisheries management and aquaculture, both of which are open to applicants with a high school diploma or GED.

These programs include courses in biology, chemistry, math and business, as well as core courses relating to fish hatchery management. Graduates are equipped to research, plan and execute the management, protection and productivity of fisheries and aquatic resources.

Associate's Degree in Aquaculture Science

This program introduces students to aquaculture, the science of farming fish, clams, shrimp and other commercially valuable species for human consumption. It also teaches hatchery and production methods for freshwater and marine fish, which are vital educational concepts for a career in fish hatchery management. Ecological aspects such as water quality, site selection and nutrition are covered, as well as topics on the advantages of keeping a healthy stock and avoiding disease through correct management of hatcheries. Additional course topics include:

  • Fish culture
  • Maintaining hatcheries
  • Zoology
  • Aquatics ecology
  • The geological environment

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Bachelor of Science in Fisheries Management and Aquaculture

This bachelor's degree program provides students with a scientific background that highlights biological and environmental sciences necessary for a career in fish hatchery management. Students learn about research methods as well. Students are required to complete core education requirements, such as history, English or a foreign language, in addition to courses in their specialization. Courses in the fisheries concentration commonly include:

  • Plants in fisheries
  • Methods of research
  • Fisheries and ecology
  • Fisheries management
  • Techniques in hatcheries
  • Aquaculture techniques

Popular Career Options

Prospective fish hatchery managers who have graduated with an associate's degree in aquaculture science can enter the public or private sector. Fish hatchery managers may work in:

  • Private commercial fish farms
  • Public fish hatcheries
  • Private and public aquariums

Graduates of a bachelor's degree program in this specialized science may also find employment in fields similar to fish hatchery management. They may secure jobs in:

  • Commercial aquaculture
  • Aquaculture extension
  • Fish population assessment
  • Management of recreational fisheries
  • Monitoring and enhancement of aquatic environments

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) notes that farmers, ranchers and agricultural managers - a group that includes aquacultural managers - were expected to see a 2% decline in job opportunities from 2014-2024. According to the BLS, these professionals earned an average of $69,880 per year as of May 2015.

The science-intensive coursework in undergraduate aquaculture science and fisheries management programs can prepare graduates for careers in hatcheries management as well as related fields, such as fish population assessment and recreational fisheries management.

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