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Duration (approx) 600 hours
Qualification Certificate

Become a fish care expert!

  • Intensive studies in all areas of fish care and culture for agriculture, their use in aquaponics, aquarium management and much more.
  • A Certificate qualification in fish care and culture, comprising six 100 modules: Marine studies I and II, Marine and Freshwater Aquaculture, Aquaponics and Aquarium Management.

Study fish care and culture in the comfort of your own home, supported by our highly experienced and qualified tutors.

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Distance learning studies - professional training in fish care and culture.

The fish industry is a billion dollar industry. We eat fish, we keep fish as pets, we farm fish and more.  If you would like to be an expert in fish, then our Certificate In Fish Care and Culture is the course for you.

  • Improve your career and job prospects in the fishing industry.
  • Start your own business in the fish world.
  • Improve your knowledge and skills.
  • Study six 100 hour modules covering marine studies, aquarium management, aquaculture and aquaponics. 

The Core Modules

There are six core modules to the course consisting of -

Marine Studies I

Marine Studies II

Aquaculture Marine

Aquaculture Freshwater


Aquarium Management

Each of the modules mentioned above can also be studied as a standalone course if you are not sure about enrolling straight onto the Certificate.

How The Course Works

You can start the course at any time.

It is studied by distance learning, so you can study in the comfort of your own home. But this doesn't mean you are all alone in your studies.  Our highly qualified and friendly tutors are there to help you every step of the way.  If you have any questions at all, they are always happy to help.

To complete the course, you are required to study six 100 hour modules.

There is an assignment at the end of each lesson. For example, in the Aquarium Management module, there are ten lessons, so ten assignments.

At the end of each module, there is also an examination which you can take at a time and location to suit you.

To pass the course you are required to pass all assignments and six exams.

If you are not sure about going straight to the certificate, you can study each of the modules mentioned as a standalone course. Please click on the links for more information.

Managing Water Quality

Water quality has a big impact upon the success of any fish farm. For this reason, it warrants constant monitoring and appropriate attention.

Fish perform all their bodily functions in water. Because fish are totally dependent upon water to breathe, feed, grow, excrete wastes, maintain a salt balance, and reproduce, understanding the physical and chemical qualities of water is critical to successful aquaculture.

To a great extent, water determines the success or failure of an aquaculture operation. Properly managing water quality is one of the surest ways to assure proper fish health.

Water quality management is intricately connected to feed management and is one of the critical components of any best management practices plan. Maintaining high water quality can reduce fish stress and improve production efficiency.

The elimination of most nitrogen waste products in land animals is performed through the kidneys. In contrast, fish rely heavily on their gills for this function, excreting primarily ammonia. A fish’s gills are permeable to water and salts. In the ocean, the salinity of water is more concentrated than that of the fish’s body fluids. In this environment water is drawn out, but salts tend to diffuse inward. Hence, marine fishes drink large amounts of sea water and excrete small amounts of highly salt-concentrated urine

Oxygen stress is the most frequently encountered water quality problem in cage culture of fish. The concentration and availability of dissolved oxygen (DO) are critical to the health and survival of caged fish. Dissolved oxygen (DO) is by far the most important chemical parameter in aquaculture. Low-dissolved oxygen levels are responsible for more fish kills, either directly or indirectly, than all other problems combined.

Like humans, fish require oxygen for respiration. The amount of oxygen consumed by the fish is a function of its size, feeding rate, activity level, and temperature. Critical dissolved oxygen levels will vary depending on species being reared and with interactions with other water quality parameters.

After oxygen, water temperature may be the single most important factor affecting the welfare of fish. Fish are cold-blooded organisms and assume approximately the same temperature as their surroundings. The temperature of the water affects the activity, behaviour, feeding, growth, and reproduction of all fishes. Fish are generally categorised into warm water, cool water, and cold water species based on optimal growth temperatures.

Ideally, species selection should be based in part on the temperature of the water supply. Any attempt to match a fish with less than ideal temperatures will involve energy expenditures for heating or cooling. This added expense will subsequently increase production costs.

Temperature also determines the amount of dissolved gases (oxygen, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, etc.) in the water. The cooler the water, the more soluble the gas will be.

Temperature plays a major role in the physical process called thermal stratification. Water has a high-heat capacity and unique density qualities. This is especially important in pond culture: In spring, water temperatures are nearly equal at all pond depths. As a result, nutrients, dissolved gases, and fish wastes are evenly mixed throughout the pond. As the days become warmer, the surface water becomes warm and lighter while the cooler-denser water forms a layer underneath.

Circulation of the colder bottom water is prevented because of the different densities between the two layers of water. Dissolved oxygen levels decrease in the bottom layer since photosynthesis and contact with the air is reduced. The already low oxygen levels are further reduced through decomposition of waste products, which settle to the pond bottom.

Other factors affecting water quality include suspended fish wastes, algal bloom, suspended solids, and other dissolved gases.

Enrol Today

Enrol today and benefit from the knowledge of specialists - with quality course notes and study materials and the support and guidance of our expert tutors. Plus if you enrol now you get the additional benefits of a reduced course price plus 6 free eBooks when you enrol.

If you have any questions, please get in touch with us by

Phone on (UK) 01384 442752 (International) +44 (0) 1384 442752, or


Courses can be started anytime from anywhere in the world!

Towergate Insurance welcomes Professional Liability insurance applications from ACS graduates across all disciplines. Click here for more details.

Meet some of our academics

Alison Pearce (animal)B.Sc.(Hons) in Animal Science. Masters Degree in Ecotourism. P.G.Cert. Ed. (Science). Alison's first job was in 1982 as a stockwoman, working with pigs in Yorkshire. Within a few years she of that she was working for the University of Western Australia as a Research Technician and instructor with their school of Agricultural Science.In 1989 she moved to Melbourne University as Unit Manager and Instructor in Animal Husbandry. By the mid 1990's she moved back to England to work in Animal Care and Veterinary Nursing at Cambridgeshire College of Agriculture. Throughout her career, Alison has developed and delivered courses in veterinary nursing and animal sciences for vocational colleges and universities in Australia, New Zealand and Australia. She has built a high level of expertise and an outstanding international reputation as an expert in animal sciences.
Dr. Gareth PearceGraduated from the University of Nottingham in 1982 with a B.Sc.(Hons) in Animal Science. Between 82 and 85 worked as Research Assistant and Demonstator in Animal Science at the University of Leeds. Over more than 30 years he has furthered his studies, obtaining eight significant university qualifications including degrees in Veterinary Science, Wildlife Conservation and Animal Behaviour. Gareth has significant teaching experience around the world as a faculty member at eight different universities including Associate Professor at Murdoch University and Director of Studies in Veterinary Science at Cambridge University. He has over 100 prestigious research papers published, and enjoys an outstanding international reputation in the fields of animal and veterinary science.
Cheryl McLardyA scientist, teacher, writer and animal scientist, with more than 20 years experience including: Sports Horse Stud Groom, Stable Manager, Yard Manager, Equine industrial Training Manager, FE Distance Learning Manager. Cheryl has travelled widely, working in England, Scotland, Australia and New Zealand; and is now based in Scotland. She holds a Bachelor of Science (Hons), Higher National Diploma in Horse Management, and a City and Guilds Teaching Certificate.

Check out our eBooks

Animal Feed & NutritionThe Aniaml Feed and Nutrition ebook is a comprehensive guide to animal feed and the nutritional requirements of different animals.
Marine AnimalsWith colour photos splashed throughout, this Marine Animals e-book is designed to provide a guide for some of the more common animals found in marine ecosystems around the world. Learn about the creatures hidden by the other 70% of the earth's surface. Explore more...
Animal HealthUnderstand animal health issues, diseases and how identify and manage illnesses and injuries. Animals can become sick for many different reasons -diseases caused by infections, injuries, poisoning, genetic disorders, poor nutrition and other things.
ManagementManagement is the process of planning, organising, leading, and controlling an organisation’s human and other resources to achieve business goals. More importantly though, effective management needs to be a process of human interaction and compassion. Most bad managers don’t know they are bad. They may well admit that they are a bit erratic, or they are sometimes late to appointments, but it is rare that they will recognise that they are ineffective as managers. Never here. This book has something to offer even the best of managers.