The median annual wage of fishers and related fishing workers was $25,590 in May 2010. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $17,300, and the top 10 percent earned more than $40,200.
Fishers and related fishing workers endure strenuous outdoor work and long hours. Commercial fishing trips may require a stay of weeks or months away from the home port. Lookout watches are a regular responsibility, and crewmembers stand watch at prearranged times of the day or night.
Many fishers are seasonal workers, and those jobs are usually filled by students and by people from other occupations, such as teachers. For example, salmon season in Alaska makes employment of fishers in that state more than double in the summer.
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition