CBU Co-op/ALL CBU STUDENTS: Lobster Technician, Sydney/Glace Bay, NS


The organization
The Cape Breton Fish Harvesters Association (CBFHA) works with local fishermen in eastern Cape Breton to conduct research on the lobster fishery. Eastern Cape Breton, or Lobster Fishing Area 27, covers the area from Bay St. Lawrence to Gabarus in Eastern Cape Breton. We monitor the health of our stock, and work directly with lobster harvesters in this research. For more information on the Cape Breton Fish Harvesters Association and its work please visit www.capebretonfish.com.

Work Term Outcomes
This is a great opportunity for biology/marine biology students to gain the following experience:
• Field work: collecting fisheries data at sea on a working fishing boat, and collecting data in port.
• Data entry and analysis: Entering data into government and university databases and analyzing data.
• Gain experience in research which would contribute towards management of a natural resource
• Exposure to participatory research, the fishing industry and how research can improve management measures in fisheries.
• Knowledge of the fishing industry, crustacean biology and resource management
• Independent work with minimal supervision while collaborating and communicating with industry workers.
• Ability to manage multiple projects and manage time, travel and resources
• Expand knowledge of lobsters and other species of benthic animals as well as planktonic stages and species.

Financial Details:
Wages: $15.00/hr at 40 hours/week
Work Term : May 28 to August 31
Mileage : 40 cents per km for travel to ports throughout the area
Benefits: EI, CPP, vacation pay and Workers’ Compensation.

Job Description
The Lobster Technician’s primary responsibility will be implementing various components of the CBFHA Research Strategy, namely at-sea sampling and lobster protein sampling in port during the lobster season and larval tows, post season sampling and data entry after the lobster season. The Technician will perform the following duties under the direction of the executive director, Veronika Brzeski:
• Participate in at-sea sampling programs for lobster under the direction of the project manager. The sampling programs will include the accurate completion of data sheets regarding the observed catch.
• Lobster sampling at sea will include measuring carapace length, determining sex, and taking observations on lobster health, maturity and presence of eggs. Identification of by-catch and incidental catch will also be recorded (Training provided).
• Lobster Quality sampling (protein sampling and moult staging) in port will include extracting fluid from the lobster, using a refractometer, snipping pleopods and examining under the microscope (Training provided).
• Participate in lobster larvae tows – stage and count larvae and other observations (meteorological and other species caught).
• Maintain scientific equipment in good working order (GPS, refractometer, thermometer, calipers, plankton net, microscope and camera).
• On-shore work includes entering data into databases and some data analysis using Excel.
• Other duties as assigned by the executive director.

Qualifications/Job Requirements
Training will be provided for most of the specific work however the following qualifications and requirements are essential:
• Must be willing to go out on fishing boats.
• Must be outgoing and look forward to meeting new people every day.
• Strong written and verbal communication skills.
• Initiative and motivated.
• Able to work independently.
• Organized.
• Experience using databases/spreadsheets, in particular Excel.
• Able to keep accurate and detailed documentation of work.
• Basic knowledge of crustacean and fish biology.
• Knowledge or experience in sampling procedures.
• Familiarity with fisheries research and the fishing industry and experience at sea are an asset.


For the 2018 season, the CBFHA intends on conducting the following biological research:
1. At-sea sampling of lobster and incidental catches: the hired student will spend the fishing day at sea measuring and sexing lobster and identifying and measuring other species caught in the traps. This work will be completed during the LFA27 lobster season (Mid-May to Mid-July). Data are to be entered into 2 databases throughout the work term.
2. Protein Sampling and molt staging: will be conducted on regular intervals at different ports. During this sampling, fluid will be extracted from the tail of a lobster and inserted onto a refractometer and a piece of pleopod is snipped from the lobster and examined under the microscope.
3. Larval tows: The student will be working with one fisherman to tow a larval net, count and stage lobster larvae and note other species. This sampling will occur in July and August, after the fishing season.
4. Post Season sampling: Several traps will be set in a few locations to monitor protein and shell hardness in lobster after the fishing season.
5. Industry Promotion: Students are encouraged submit posts to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to promote the Association’s work and our inshore fishing industry.

Application Details

To Apply

Send your application (C.V., references and cover letter) by Friday May 25th at 4pm to:
Veronika Brzeski at veronika@capebretonfish.com

If you are interested in learning more about turning this position into a 3 credit co-op course in your degree, contact carly_turnbull@cbu.ca