Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) Observer

Department: Fisheries Observing
Location: Various, MA

Have you ever worked as a NMFS certified fisheries observer and want to try something new? NAFO observers travel hundreds of miles offshore, into international waters on the Grand Banks to participate in a cooperative, multi-nation fisheries that target some of the most productive and pristine populations of fish in the north Atlantic.  Collected data is used to document stock information which is then used by NAFO scientist to manage the fisheries and preserve future generations of fish and fishermen.  

Responsibilities: NAFO observers work at sea, collecting and recording data and biological samples aboard commercial fishing vessels fishing in international waters of the North Atlantic.   Trawl and long-line vessels range in size from 80’ to 110’, and trips range from 15 to 28 days.  After attending a mandatory two -day training in Marion, MA, observers deploy from various ports in the Northeast, from Cape May, NJ to Newfoundland, Canada. This is a challenging job and candidates must be physically able to handle heavy lifting, working odd hours and long days in rough seas.  NAFO observing provides an excellent stepping stone in a career in marine biology, as observers are widely recognized for being excellent field biologists.
Qualifications:  Candidates MUST have a current or recent National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) trawl or long-line observer certification and be in good standing. Candidates MUST have received survival at sea training within the last 2 years.  Additionally, a BS in Marine Biology or Biology with 30 credits of biology coursework, 6 credits of marine science and a math class is required.  Your own transportation is required.  Candidates must be a US Citizen, possess a valid driver’s license and US Passport book. 

Compensation:  Compensation starts at $16.50/hr (equivalent to $198/day).  Observers will be paid a minimum of 12 hours of work pay for each day at sea and may be eligible for additional paid time while on land. The AIS benefits package includes health and dental insurance, vacation, sick and holiday benefits.  

Training:  Two-day, paid training course in Marion, MA to be held prior to vessel departure. Training includes instructions on sampling protocols, gear, fisheries, fish identification, and safety.  Accommodations and meals provided.   

Contact: If you would like to apply, please click the following link to submit the required information:  resume, cover letter, at least 3 professional references (name, email address and phone number), and unofficial copies of your college transcripts.  All documents must be submitted in order for your application to be considered.

Closing:   7/30/2018

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