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The Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) Canada is mandated to conserve and protect fish and fish habitat of Canada. DFO’s Fishery Guardian program is a key part of the department’s compliance strategy to protect inland fish stocks, in particular salmon, in the Newfoundland and Labrador region. Seawatch Inc. is the current contracted provider of Fishery Guardian services to DFO in Newfoundland and southern Labrador.


Is a Job as a Fishery Guardian Right for You?

The primary role of DFO’s Fishery Guardian program is to provide effective enforcement of regulations protecting salmon and trout based on pre-approved patrol plans.


Fishery Guardian Duties

  • Patrol by vehicle, all-terrain vehicle (ATV), or foot, both at night and during the day, along inland and coastal water systems to ensure compliance with the Fisheries Act and associated Regulations

  • Participate in surveillance operations/stakeouts, often for extended periods of time under confining conditions in isolated areas

  • Conduct inspections, check anglers for licensing, catch limits and other fisheries regulatory requirements; complete and submit inspection reports

  • Participate in preventive enforcement activities, including providing a visible presence on river systems

  • Take detailed notes and prepare an orderly documentation of information related to breaches of fisheries legislation

  • Collect, label, preserve and secure storage of all evidence and seizures resulting from the detection of a violation

  • Present oral and documentary evidence in court

  • Promote public awareness and public assistance by participating in public awareness and education programs geared towards conservation of salmon and trout

  • Respond to inquiries from the public concerning regulatory requirements (e.g. open/close times, bag limits, gear)

  • Provide information on fishing regulations to anglers and outfitters

  • Contribute to the National Fisheries Intelligence Service (NFIS) program by submitting intelligence intake forms on a bi-weekly basis in line with NFIS as it pertains to the Fisheries Act and associated Regulations

  • Observe, record and report all information respecting the disruption to fish habitat including obstructions in waterways or the dumping of harmful/polluting material in inland waters  

  • Conduct water level and temperature testing on rivers and report results

  • Photograph areas where water temperatures and levels were recorded



Fishery Guardian Qualifications

Applicants must meet the following requirements in order to be considered for the position:


Mandatory Qualifications

  • Have successfully completed secondary school or equivalent, OR an acceptable combination of education and experience OR have successfully completed a post-secondary course(s) in Natural/Renewable Resources, Resource Management, Criminology, Law Enforcement or similar course(s) of at least 9 months in duration 

  • Be legally entitled to work in Canada

  • Have completed a DFO health evaluation

  • Be successful in receiving a security clearance to the “Reliability Status” level

  • Possess a valid First Aid certificate

  • Possess a valid class 5 driver’s license

  • Meet the current safety requirements of Transport Canada Boat Safety Regulations
    as required for the job

  • Have or be willing to obtain DVS BS and SVOP certificates

  • Must not be currently charged with any Fisheries, Wildlife or criminal offenses

  • Must not have been convicted of any Fisheries, Wildlife or criminal offense in the preceding
    five (5) years (unless a pardon has been granted)

  • Must not be prohibited from possessing a firearm and/or explosive


Desirable Qualifications:

  • Ability to operate boats, outboard motors, and ATVs

  • Experience in wilderness travel and survival

  • Ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing



Fishery Guardian Training

Fishery Guardians are required to participate in a one week training course covering
the following topics:

  • Classroom instruction and practical training in basic self-defense, handcuffing techniques,
    and the use of the ASP baton and OCS

  • Powers of a Fishery Guardian

  • Code of Conduct

  • Types of enforcement

  • Notebooks  

  • Court procedures

  • Data collection methods

  • Species identification

  • Fishery management plans 


To apply

Interested in working as a Fishery Guardian with Seawatch Inc.?

Please submit a resume by:


Fax:     709 754 9530 or

Mail:    Seawatch Inc.

           10 Austin Street, Suite 102

            St. John’s, NL

            A1B 4C2

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