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Backpack Electrofishing Certification

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2 Days – CAD$650

Backpack electrofishing is a safe and effective method used by fisheries technicians and biologists to capture, sample, and relocate live fish from water. This one-and-a-half day course serves to certify participants in backpack electrofishing safety, fish handling methods, equipment, and fundamentals of electrical theory. Upon certification, students will be qualified backpack electrofishing crew supervisors or members.

Our experienced instructors are Professional Biologists with years of practical field experience across western Canada. In addition to delivering WorkSafeBC curriculum in partnership with the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT), our instructors offer real-world experience to elevate the student experience and readiness for on-the-job success. With a background as environmental consultants, we deliver certification within the context of transportation, utility, and energy projects.

People with backpack electroshocker to capture fish

Course Overview

Day one is a foundational classroom session which includes electrofishing theory and application, and safety.

Day two is a practical hands-on session where students will practice electrofishing in a field setting using a Smith-Root LR-24 backpack electrofisher. Each participant must demonstrate safe operation of equipment (as efisher and netter) and handling
of fish. Students are issued a NAIT Certificate of Achievement by the at upon successful course completion.

Objectives

  • Understand and identify the safety hazards and mitigations associated with backpack electrofishing.
  • Apply electrical theory to field-level electrofishing equipment settings to achieve sampling success while minimize potential harm to fish.
  • Safely operate, troubleshoot, and maintain modern backpack electrofishing units.
  • Manipulate the electrical field to optimize fish capture and minimize fish stress.
  • Practice safe electrofishing habits including equipment selection and operation.
  • Identify and describe key personal protective equipment related to electrofishing.
  • Identify and describe key safety features related to electrofishing equipment.
  • Respond effectively to an electrofishing related incident and apply standard emergency response procedures.
  • Demonstrate safe fish handling and processing techniques.
  • Understand the importance of equipment decontamination in preventing the spread of aquatic disease and invasive species and effectively decontaminating equipment.

Recertification

This certificate does not expire, but we recommend recertification after a lapse in electrofishing practice or if required by an employer.

We offer this program as a custom delivery. Please contact efishing@esticanada.com to schedule a course date and location!

Upcoming dates

PRINCE GEORGE (May 23-24)
May 23, 2024
Prince George, BC
EDMONTON (May 28-29)
May 28, 2024
Edmonton, AB
EDMONTON (May 30-31)
May 30, 2024
Edmonton, AB
RED DEER (June 10-11)
June 10, 2024
Red Deer, AB
RED DEER (June 12-13)
June 12, 2024
Red Deer, AB

FAQ

  • Leak-free chest waders with non-slip footwear (no felt bottoms please), such as cleat or rubber soled wading shoes. Please ensure your waders have a wading belt.
  • A wide-brimmed hat or ballcap
  • Polarized sunglasses to help with seeing through the water column
  • A waterproof field notebook
  • Appropriate outdoor clothing
  • A high-visibility safety vest
  • Personal flotation devices (PFDs) (recommended but not required)
  • A bagged lunch and water
  • Light duty (cotton, wool, or poly) liner gloves to wear inside our linesmen gloves to keep your hands warm and our gloves clean


Note: Please bring clean and disinfected equipment.
Disinfection requirements differ between jurisdictions, please see below for more information.

Decontaminate your waders and boots before coming. Follow provincial guidelines for your jurisdiction.

After registering at ESTI, please anticipate an email from NAIT registration about this course’s location and start time details, including NAIT’s portal setup instructions. This should be roughly 1.5 weeks before course start. Review our requirements below prior to joining us; this will help to ensure the best experience possible for yourself, our team, and the fish!
As this is a NAIT course and certifications are produced by the department of Corporate & Continuing Education, participants will be required to create a NAIT portal account. Participants will receive instructions provided in a registration confirmation email from NAIT on how to access their portal (grades) and then Moodle (optional) to access additional course content.

The three certification types are determined by the participant’s skill and knowledge expression over the two-day program. Learners will be graded with a theory exam and a practical assessment. To achieve one of the three certifications listed below:

Crew members are expected to achieve a grade of no lower than 80% on the safety and theory evaluation, attend all components of the training, and display a level of competence in the field suitable for a crew member role as deemed appropriate by the instructor.

Crew supervisors are expected to achieve a grade of no lower than 95% on the safety and theory evaluation (which includes questions over and above the crew member evaluation), attend all components of the training, and display a level of competence in the field suitable for a crew supervisor role as deemed appropriate by the instructor.

Crew members on demand must attain a minimum of 95% on the theory exam and have support of your instructors for in field operational proficiency. The learner has decided to pursue crew member status until a point in time where they have sufficient field experience to take on the responsibility and the legal duty of care assigned to a crew supervisor.

Fish identification
Participates should have the basis of fish identification prior to entering this course, as there will be limited time for identification training.

First aid is a prerequisite to this course. Most organizations won’t recognize the Electrofishing Certificate without a valid standard first aid and level C CPR with AED training in Alberta. Standard first aid certification is not required but is recommended for this course. For work in BC please confirm with WorkSafeBC for accepted first aid courses at WorkSafeBC.

Course Cancellations
Please note that courses may be cancelled at any time due sub-minimum registration numbers. Upon cancellation, registrants will receive a full refund.

Course Withdrawals
Our customer’s plans and scheduling changes and ESTI will try our best to accommodate changes, including registrant withdrawals. At times, we will not be able refund a course registration as our decision to proceed may be based on securing a minimum class size,
which varies depending on location.

A course withdrawal may potentially reduce class size below the course minimum, as mentioned above. In this scenario, ESTI may have incurred or committed to fixed travel costs, including (but not limited to): venue and/or vehicle and/or rental costs, and instructor costs.
ESTI must receive notice of participant withdrawal at efishing@esticanada.com.

If ESTI receives notice 14 or more days prior to the scheduled training course start date – ESTI will refund 100% of course registration fees. If applicable, credit card payment and refund processing fees of 3.5% of the original course fee will be applied.

If ESTI receives notice between 7-14 days prior to the scheduled training course start date – ESTI will refund 50% of course registration fees (including 50% of applicable taxes). If applicable, credit card payment and refund processing fees of 3.5% of the original course
fee will be applied.

If ESTI receives notice less than 7 days prior to the scheduled training course start date – ESTI will refund 0% of course registration fees.

Certification is valid for 3 years or after a significant lapse in practice.

Yes, we offer this program as a custom delivery. Please contact efishing@esticanada.com to schedule a course date and location!