Fishing masters and officers (NOC 8261)

About this job

Fishing masters and officers:

  • manage and operate saltwater and freshwater fishing vessels greater than 100 gross tonnes to catch fish and other marine life
  • work for companies that operate commercial fishing boats
Common job titles
  • fishing master
  • fishing vessel boatswain / bo'sun / master
  • fishing vessel navigation officer


Fishing masters and officers perform some or all of the following duties:

  • command fishing vessel to catch fish and other marine life
  • decide on areas for fishing, plot courses and compute navigational positions using compass, charts, tables and other aids
  • steer vessels and operate navigational instruments and electronic fishing aids such as colour and paper sounders
  • direct fishing operations and supervise crew activities
  • record fishing progress, crew activities, weather and sea conditions on ship's log
  • choose and train vessel crews

Work environment

Key aspects of the work in this occupation:

  • Work takes place in a fishing boat.
  • Working on a boat in a marine environment can be dangerous.

Career paths and resources

Career paths

Progression to merchant or government vessel officer positions (which require a Marine Officer Certificate) is possible with additional training and experience.

Completion of Transport Canada examinations is required to advance from Fishing Master Class IV through Class I. Training programs are provided in provincial training centres.

Additional resources

Additional resources are not currently available for this career.