Fishing and hunting workers
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Fishers and Related Fishing Workers
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Overview
Fishing and hunting workers catch and trap various types of animal life. The fish and wild animals they catch are for human food, animal feed, bait, and other uses.
Safety from automation
Fishers and related fishing workers are more likely to be automated than 64% of other careers.
Education
Only 9% of fishing and hunting workers have a bachelor's degree or higher.
Education attained by fishing and hunting workers
High School
Some College
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Context: workers with bachelor's degrees
Fewer fishing and hunting workers have bachelor's degrees than 71% of other careeers.
Gender
Women account for 4% of fishing and hunting workers -- that's a smaller percentage than 88% of other jobs.
Gender of fishing and hunting workers
Men
Women
Context: Salary inequity
For each career, we compared the median (middle) men's salary to the median women's salary. For fishing and hunting workers, the median men's salary was 49% more the median woman's salary.
Race/Origin
About 17% of fishing and hunting workers are minority, and 17% are foreign-born.
Race/origin of fishing and hunting workers
White
Black
Pacific Islander
Hispanic
Asian
American Indian
Multiracial
Other
Context: Foreign-born workers (17%)
Job benefits
Employer or union-sponsored pension plans are offered to 4% of fishing and hunting workers, and 15% have company-sponsored health insurance (25% have dependents enrolled in their employer's health plan).
Employer-provided health coverage for fishing and hunting workers
100% premiums covered
Partial premiums covered
Plan with no cost sharing
No health insurance
The downside
Some jobs are more stressful than others, and some are just plain dangerous. The following list gives the percentages of fishers and related fishing workers who report hazardous or difficult situations typically occurring at least once a week.
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety (80%)
  • Frequency of Conflict Situations (62%)
  • Consequence of Error (61%)
  • Exposed to Hazardous Equipment (59%)
  • Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings (57%)
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People (53%)
  • Exposed to Contaminants (52%)
  • Time Pressure (52%)
  • Exposed to Whole Body Vibration (50%)
  • Exposed to Hazardous Conditions (31%)
SOURCES:24.0 O*NET
Salary and diversity
Employers
A look at employers
The donut shares the break-down of workers by employer type, and following we show the salary distributions for these workers based on those employer types. For some careers, the salaries can be vastly different between private, government, and self-employment. As with our salary overview, we view the both the BLS economists' salary profiles and the household-reported salaries from ACS to get a thorough understanding of where fishers and related fishing workers work and for what salary. We have the great faith in the accuracy of economist-vetted BLS data; however, the BLS restrictions on which employers are surveyed skews the data a bit (read more in the sources), and the ACS responses provide different and useful categorizations of employers and salaries.
Employers of Fishing and hunting workers (ACS)
Private for-profit (36.1%)
Private not-for-profit (1.0%)
Local government (1.7%)
State government (1.0%)
Federal government (0.8%)
Self-employed incorporated (12.3%)
Self-employed not incorporated (46.9%)
Working without pay (0.1%)
Age and career advancement
Salary growth for fishing and hunting workers

The biggest take-away from the following two charts is the relationship between salary and experience that we can infer from age. Does this job seem to attract especially younger or older workers? Does it reward experience?

Take a minute a look at how much you might expect your salary to increase with each five years' experience, as well as how the numbers working in this career changes. We only provide this data when there are enough consistent ACS survey responses to allow a reasonable margin of error, so for some careers you will see gaps in our reporting of salary by age.

$29K$32K$37K$41K$37K$36K$25K$42K$30K$0$20K$40K$60K$80K$100K$120KSalary distribution20-2425-2930-3435-3940-4445-4950-5455-5960-64
01K2K3K4KNumber employed20-2425-2930-3435-3940-4445-4950-5455-5960-64

Our only sources for career data containing age, gender, or origin/race come from the Census Bureau. To provide these breakdowns, we have aggregated ACS person-level career survey responses by career, gender, race, and age. These graphics reflect the results of our aggregations, and are useful for identifying trends. A careful statistical study of the impact of age, gender, and race on salaries would correct for other factors that could be contributing to salary differences.

Gender and Equity
Fishing and hunting workers and gender

With 4% women, this occupation has a lower percentage of women than 88% of careers.

Context: Women in the workforce
4%0%20%40%60%80%100%
Gender of Fishing and hunting workers
Men (96%)
Women (4%)
Distribution: Salaries by gender

We only have enough data to accuarately show the salary distribution for men. This chart shows you the salary range for most workers by gender.

$33K$0$20K$40K$60K$80K$100KMen
Context: Salary Inequity

Nationwide there are twenty careers for which men do not have a higher median (middle) salary than women. The chart below shows the salary inequity, the percentage by which the median men's salary is higher than the median women's salary, for most jobs. Fishing and hunting workers have one of the higher percentage increases for men's salary, with the increase for the men's median salary over the women's median salary in this job even higher than that for 97% of other jobs.

49%0%20%40%60%80%100%

Our only sources for career data containing age, gender, or origin/race come from the Census Bureau. To provide these breakdowns, we have aggregated ACS person-level career survey responses by career, gender, race, and age. These graphics reflect the results of our aggregations, and are useful for identifying trends. A careful statistical study of the impact of age, gender, and race on salaries would correct for other factors that could be contributing to salary differences.

Race/Origin
Race and origin of fishing and hunting workers

The representation of minority and foreign-born workers is quite different between careers, and the relative pay of those workers also varies significantly between careers. There is a smaller percentage of minority fishing and hunting workers than for 60% of other careers. Although this career does not include a large percentage of minorities, it does hire more foreign-born people that most other careers.

Race/origin of fishing and hunting workers
White (81% )
Asian (7% )
American Indian (5% )
Multiracial (3% )
Other (2% )
Black (2% )
Pacific Islander (0% )
Hispanic (0% )
Context: Representation of minorities in the workforce
17%0%20%40%60%80%100%
Context: Representation of foreign-born workers
17%0%20%40%60%80%100%
Distribution: Salaries for fishing and hunting workers by race/origin

For some careers, there is a pay disparity depending on race or origin, though this is not prevalent. We calculate standard errors for all of our calculations, and when the error is high we do not show results. Therefore, for some jobs will have omitted race/origin categories.

$27K$33K$42K$0$20K$40K$60K$80K$100KAsianWhiteMultiracial
Distribution: Salaries for fishing and hunting workers by nativity
$30K$34K$0$20K$40K$60K$80K$100KAll foreign-bornAll native citizens

Our only sources for career data containing age, gender, or origin/race come from the Census Bureau. To provide these breakdowns, we have aggregated ACS person-level career survey responses by career, gender, race, and age. These graphics reflect the results of our aggregations, and are useful for identifying trends. A careful statistical study of the impact of age, gender, and race on salaries would correct for other factors that could be contributing to salary differences.

Pathways to this career
Education requirements and salary
Education attained by fishers and related fishing workers

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), fishers and related fishing workers typically hold a .

Sometimes the typical education identified by the BLS differs a bit from the reality of the how much education current workers actually have. The donut shows the education level held by people currently working as fishing and hunting workers as reported in responses to the American Community Survey. Following, we investigate whether education level influences salary for fishing and hunting workers.

Education attained by fishing and hunting workers
None
High School
Some College
Associate's Degree
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Professional Deg/Doct
Doctorate
Details: Education and training recommended for fishers and related fishing workers

A formal educational credential is not required for one to become fishing or hunting worker. However, fishers may improve their chances of getting a job by enrolling in a 2-year vocational–technical program. Some community colleges and universities offer fishery technology and related programs that include courses in seamanship, vessel operations, marine safety, navigation, vessel repair, and fishing gear technology. These programs are typically located near coastal areas and include hands-on experience.

Details: Licensing and certification recommended for fishers and related fishing workers

Captains of fishing boats and hunters and trappers must be licensed.

Crewmembers on certain fish-processing vessels may need a merchant mariner’s document. The U.S. Coast Guard issues these documents, as well as licenses, to people who meet specific health, physical, and academic requirements.

States set licensing requirements for boats operating in state waters, defined as inland waters and waters within 3 miles of the coast.

Fishers need a permit to fish in almost any water. Permits are distributed by states for state waters and by regional fishing councils for federal waters. The permits specify the fishing season, the type and amount of fish that may be caught, and, sometimes, the type of permissible fishing gear.

Hunters and trappers need a state license to hunt in any land or forest. Licenses specify the hunting season, the type and amount of wild animals that may be caught, and the type of weapons or traps that can be used.

Distribution: Salary by education level

What level of education is truly needed for fishing and hunting workers? Below we see the distribution of fishing and hunting workers salaries based on the education attained. These comparisons are based on all survey responses by those who identified themselves as fishing and hunting workers, and are not intended as a statistical analysis of salary differences that would correct for non-educational factors that could contribute to high or low earnings.

$31K$32K$32K$40K$41K$0$20K$40K$60K$80K$100K$120KNone (24%)High School (46%)Some College (18%)Associate's Degree (4%)Bachelor's Degree (8%)
Certificate/degree pathways

The Department of Education recommends the following college degree programs as preparation for this career. You can click the program row to learn more about the program and explore a list of schools that offer the program.

Program
Education
Education level of awarded degrees
Less than bachelor's
bachelor's degree
Higher than bachelor's
Gender
Gender of graduates
Men
Women
Race/Origin
Race/origin of graduates
White
Minority
International
Number of degrees awarded in 2017
Fishing and Fisheries Sciences and Management
642
Switching Careers
Most common new jobs
The most common next careers for fishing and hunting workers

What jobs will most fishing and hunting workers hold next year?

The data in this chart comes from person interviews for the Census Bureau's Current Population Survey. The survey interviews households eight times over a two-year period, allowing us a glimpse into how people move from job to job. You can see more details from the results of the survey in our last tab in this section, and you can read about our methodology in our source descriptions.

Here we see all of the jobs that at least 1% of fishing and hunting workers reported holding in their second year's survey. Is your future job on this list?

Fishing and hunting workersProduction workersHand laborers and freight, stock, and material moversFirst-line supervisors of non-retail sales workersSheet metal workersIndustrial and refractory machinery mechanicsSailors and marine oilers, and ship engineersArchitectural and engineering managersAgricultural ManagersPolice officersMaids and housekeeping cleanersManagers (specialized areas)Tax preparersCarpentersGrounds maintenance workers
Lateral career moves
Lateral job transitions for fishing and hunting workers

A lateral career transition is a move to a job with similar pay and responsibilities. A move to such a job can offer a change of pace without an increase in stress or a decrease in pay. The following table simply identifies all 2 jobs which were held by at least 1% of survey respondents before working as fishing and hunting workers as well as 1% of respondents after working as fishing and hunting workers. Select a row to investigate the job's full description and determine if it truly offers an opportunity for a lateral transition.

Lateral-move careers for fishing and hunting workers
Annual openings
How many openings are expected each year?
Salary
Salary distribution for people in this occupation. Range is 0-$200,000.
Median
Middle 50%
Middle 80%
Education
High School
Some College
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Gender
Men
Women
Agricultural Managers
95,600
$0$200K$39K
Sailors and marine oilers, and ship engineers
5,700
$0$200K$42K
Full prior and next career listings
Prior and next careers for fishing and hunting workers: full listings

What do people typically do before and after they work as fishing and hunting workers? Here are the full lists of all jobs that at least 1% of fishing and hunting workers surveyed reported as holding a year earlier or later.

Choose which type of transition to view
Prior jobs
Next jobs
Prior careers for fishing and hunting workers
Annual openings
How many openings are expected each year?
Salary
Salary distribution for people in this occupation. Range is 0-$200,000.
Median
Middle 50%
Middle 80%
Education
High School
Some College
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Gender
Men
Women
Percentage Transitioning
What percentage worked in this job the previous year?
Cashiers
659,300
$0$200K$20K
1.6%
Driver/sales workers and truck drivers
376,900
$0$200K$41K
4.2%
Construction laborers
153,300
$0$200K$30K
2.3%
Agricultural workers (specialized areas)
129,300
$0$200K$21K
2.4%
Agricultural Managers
95,600
$0$200K$39K
1.5%
Electricians
83,100
$0$200K$49K
1.6%
Supervisors of transportation and material moving workers
44,400
$0$200K$51K
1.3%
Clergy
29,200
$0$200K$46K
1.9%
Tour and travel guides
9,700
$0$200K$25K
1.6%
Small engine mechanics
9,100
$0$200K$32K
1.6%
Biological technicians
8,900
$0$200K$47K
1.2%
Sailors and marine oilers, and ship engineers
5,700
$0$200K$42K
1.5%
Ship and boat captains and operators
4,800
$0$200K$59K
1.1%
Fishing and hunting workers
$0$200K$32K
57.9%
No occupation
12.7%
Read about fishers and related fishing workers
Responsibilities and activities
Responsibilities and activities

Fishers and related fishing workers typically do the following:

  • Locate fish with the use of fish-finding equipment
  • Steer vessels and operate navigational instruments
  • Maintain engines, fishing gear, and other onboard equipment by making minor repairs
  • Sort, pack, and store the catch in holds with ice and other freezing methods
  • Measure fish to ensure that they are of legal size
  • Return undesirable or illegal catches to the water
  • Guide nets, traps, and lines onto vessels by hand or with hoisting equipment
  • Signal other workers to move, hoist, and position loads of the catch

Hunters and trappers typically do the following:

  • Locate wild animals with the use of animal-finding equipment
  • Catch wild animals with weapons, such as rifles or bows, or with traps, such as snares
  • Sort, pack, and store the catch with ice and other freezing methods
  • Follow hunting regulations, which vary by state and always include a safety component
  • Sell what they catch for food and decorative purposes

Fishers and related fishing workers work in deep or shallow water. In deep water, they typically perform their duties on large fishing boats that are equipped for long stays at sea. Some process the catch on board and prepare the fish for sale.

Other fishers work in shallow water on small boats that often have a crew of only one or two. They might put nets across the mouths of rivers or inlets; use pots and traps to catch fish or shellfish, such as lobsters and crabs; or use dredges to gather other shellfish, such as oysters and scallops.

Some fishers harvest marine vegetation rather than fish. They use rakes and hoes to gather Irish moss and kelp.

The following are types of fishers and related fishing workers:

  • Fishing boat captains plan and oversee the fishing operation including the species of fish to be caught, the location of the best fishing grounds, the method of capture, trip length, and sale of the catch. They also supervise the crew and record daily activities in the ship’s log.To plot a ship’s course, fishing boat captains use electronic navigational equipment, including Global Positioning System (GPS) instruments. They also use radar and sonar to avoid obstacles above and below the water and to find fish.
  • Fishing deckhands perform the everyday tasks of baiting; setting lines or traps; hauling in and sorting the catch; and maintaining the boat and fishing gear. Deckhands also secure and remove mooring lines when docking or undocking the boat.

Fishers work in commercial fishing, which does not include recreational fishing. For more information on workers on boats that handle fishing charters, see the profile on water transportation workers.

Aquaculture—raising and harvesting fish and other aquatic life under controlled conditions in ponds or confined bodies of water—is a different field. For more information, see the profile on farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers.

Hunters and trappers locate wild animals with GPS instruments, compasses, charts, and whistles. They then catch or kill them with traps or weapons. Hunters and trappers sell the wild animals they catch, for either food, fur, or decorative purposes.

Personality and skills
Personality and skills

Can you see yourself in the ranks of fishers and related fishing workers? Here are the skills and traits that could lead to success.

Critical-thinking skills
Fishing and hunting workers must reach conclusions through sound reasoning and judgment. They determine how to improve their catch and must react appropriately to weather conditions.
Detail oriented
Fishing and hunting workers must be precise and accurate when measuring the quality of their catch or prey. They must also pay attention to detail when working with various fishing and hunting gear to guard against injury.
Listening skills
Because they take instructions from captains and other crewmembers or hunters, fishing and hunting workers need to communicate well and listen effectively.
Machine operation skills
Fishing and hunting workers must be able to operate and perform routine maintenance on complex fishing and navigation machinery, as well as weapons and traps.
Physical stamina
Fishing and hunting workers need endurance. They must be able to work long hours, often under strenuous conditions.
Physical strength
Fishing and hunting workers must use physical strength, along with hand dexterity and coordination, to perform difficult tasks repeatedly.
Variation by state
Employment
State-by-state employment numbers

Some careers tend to be centered in specific parts of the country. For example, most jobs in fashion are in New York or California. Let's see if your dream job is easy to find in your dream location! We have a few choices for viewing the data that can help you get a full employment picture.

Job density versus job count

Which states hire the most fishers and related fishing workers? We wonder if that's a fair question since states come in all sizes, so instead let's start with the question of which states have the highest density of people working as fishers and related fishing workers. You can choose to view the number of jobs per state if you prefer.

BLS vs ACS data

This map defaults to employment information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which provides job totals carefully compiled for accuracy and with a primary focus on how employers describe their workers. The BLS job totals do not count self-employed workers. We've also compiled totals using the Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS) which are based on how workers describe themselves. Sometimes ACS results are quite a bit different from the employer-based BLS data.

One important factor in the differences between ACS and BLS data is that the ACS numbers are for all fishing and hunting workers, comprised of all specialities listed in the menu bar, and you can choose to view the BLS at the specialty or full career level.

Choose the metric to review
Jobs per 1000 working
Number of jobs
Use this data source
BLS for this specialty
Number of Fishers and Related Fishing Workers per 1,000 workers (BLS)
Select a state to see local area details
AKMEVTNHWAIDMTNDMNMINYMARIORUTWYSDIAWIINOHPANJCTCANVCONEMOILKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
0.0
Salary
Salaries by state
Let's get a feel for where fishers and related fishing workers earn the highest salaries. There are several choices for which data we consider and how we view that data, and each can lead to different conclusions, so please read on...
Median salary versus state ratio

We use two methods to compare salaries across states:

  • In-state comparisons: the ratio of median (middle) salaries for fishing and hunting workers compared to the median salary for all people working in each state, or
  • Median salary: the unaltered median salaries for fishing and hunting workers.

We hope the ratio allows perspective about how salaries may compare to the regional cost-of-living.

BLS vs ACS data

We have two sources for statewide salary information with important distinctions. The BLS data is created by surveying companies, missing individuals who are self-employed or work for smaller companies. The ACS data is compiled from multi-faceted household surveys and may reflect the inconsistencies that people may have in reporting information. The ACS salaries are for all fishing and hunting workers, which combines the specialities from which you can choose at the top of the page.

Choose the metric to review
In-state comparisions
Median salary
Use this data source
BLS for this specialty
Median salary ratio: Fishers and Related Fishing Workers to all workers (BLS for this specialty)
The darkest shading corresponds to states in which fishers and related fishing workers earn the highest salary when compared to other jobs in the state. We think this ratio might be a better indicator than the actual salary for your buying power as a state resident.
Select a state to see local area details
AKMEVTNHWAIDMTNDMNMINYMARIORUTWYSDIAWIINOHPANJCTCANVCONEMOILKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
0.0
Compare to similar jobs

If this job interests you, then use the dots below to find other jobs you might like. The dots closer to the top represent jobs that are like Fishing and hunting workers (shown with a blue star). Look for the dots to the right to find the best salaries! (We pulled salary data from BLS, and they give a top salary value of just over $200K to protect privacy, so our graph would go much higher if the salaries were not top coded.)

How should the career similarity be computed

There are a number of ways to measure the similarity of jobs, here are a few we provide:

  • Interests: Also known as a Holland Code - Are you a thinker? A helper? What fits your personality?
  • Environment: Are there hazards? Will you be comfortable? Will it be stressful?
  • Knowledge: What do you need to know the most about?
  • Physical Abilities: Do you need to especially strong or coordinated?
Choose the similarity measure to compare careers
Interests
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Knowledge
Physical Abilities
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