Aquaculture Work Experience

  • Aquaculture approval number 9BRBC 067 601  Reference Number 97BRBC 0676


Ausyfish has been providing work experience for aquaculture students for about 25 years. We operate throughout the year. If you are interested please look very carefully at this page. Also look at the whole web site. This will let you see exactly what to expect. If you still have any questions please email us.

  • For free work experience you need to be a student and be at least 18 years of age, preferably studying aquaculture or related subjects.
  • The minimum time for free work experience is four weeks. The maximum work experience time will depend on the circumstances of the experience you require, but can be up to 5 months.
  • A booking deposit must be paid to confirm booking. If you are doing the work experience as part of your University's requirements, then the deposit is $150 (We will require a letter from the University or TAFE to confirm this).
  • If you are doing the work experience for another reason, then the deposit is $300. This deposit is refundable on completion of the work experience period that has been booked.
  • Students can do less than four weeks but if they are housed at the farm an accomidation fee will apply. If you are doing the work experience as part of your University's requirements, then the fee is $200.00 per week, if housed at the farm, or $100.00 per week if housed off farm. (We will require a letter from the University or TAFE to confirm this).
  • If you are doing the work experience for another reason, then the fee range is $200 to $2,800.00 per week. This fee must be paid, in advance when the booking is made, and is NOT refundable. The fee will be based on your specific requirements. For example, if you need hands-on training for hatchery skills and fry production, the fee will be $2,800.00 per week, with a minimum of two weeks.
  • The minimum term for work experience is 14 days. 
  • You will be exposed to the day-to-day activities of a working fish farm/hatchery producing a variety of fishes for a variety of markets. 
  • We prefer to only host one student at a time, however, subject to approval we can host two students at the same time.
  • Ausyfish will provide you with hands-on aquaculture experience relative to the time of year and the normal activities of the farm for that time of year.
  • Bookings are essential.

What You Get


We provide your food while you are at the farm. You will prepare your own meals from the food provided.  


Your room is air-conditioned with TV, and free unlimited wi-fi.


Bring your own lap top and connect to our hi speed broad band wireless system. Unlimited data.


Plenty of aquaculture books are available at Ausyfish to assist in your studies.


All students are provided with an evaluation at the end of their work experience period. This assessment lists activities the student was involved with, skills acquired, general skills, ability to work in a team, special assignments, personal reference/personality, reliability, ability to work unsupervised, dates of students training period etc. The document is handed to students as a hard copy. Electronic copies are not provided. Schools or employers are able to confirm the content of individual assessments by contacting Ausyfish.


Depending on the length of your stay, and the time of year, other activities can be arranged, reef fishing, river fishing, bush trip and camping, etc. There are several world class attractions near by. See the notes below by past aquaculture students.

What You Will Need

For international students:

You may need a Visa if you are coming from another country.  Ausyfish will sponsor your visa if required. You will need to provide us with a letter from your school or university confirming you are a student and this work experience will form part of you degree.

A study visa usually forbids students to work in Australia. You will need a "work visa" if you plan to make ANY income while in Australia. As sponsors of a study visa, Ausyfish is not permitted to pay any money to students and participation in any paid work activities in not permitted. A breach of this condition may result in Ausyfish not being able to sponsor future students visas.

For Australian students:

You need to provide a letter from your school or university, if this is to be part of you school training.

What You Should Bring 







Also, the usual clothes for the time of year of your visit.

If you have a lap-top, (notebook) computer you should bring it too. Ausyfish has high speed wireless broadband you can connect to.

Long term students will find having their own car handy so they can explore the area.

What We Get

Low cost labor, and benefit from the exchange of ideas from people with different experiences.

What if you are not a student and do not qualify for free work experience.

You can still apply for aquaculture training at Ausyfish. The fee for training at Ausyfish is $400.00 per week from April to September, inclusive. $1,200 per week from October to March, inclusive.. Email us for details.

Timing Your Visit

Activities vary depending on the time of the year. Spawning of native perch takes place from about mid September until about mid January. This can sometimes extend through to April. Ornamental fish, both exotic and native starts from about mid September until April. Harvesting native fingerlings from December to May and ornamental fish year round.


  • Ausyfish Pty Ltd ABN 69 010 810 670 Aquaculture approval number 2005BC0681   Terms and conditions.
  • It is important for potential students to be aware that we do not accept students as observers.
  • They must work as part of the team. All students must be productive.
  • They breed and raise fish.
  • Normal commercial activities are also part of students daily activities, such as harvesting and packing fish for air freight.
  • Students must be prepared, and agree, to work the hours that other employees work.
  • Students are given responsible activities which have commercial outcomes. These outcomes must be achieved.
  • Students must be prepared to become part of the Australian way of life.
  • We do not offer any students any form of payment or wages. There are a number of reasons for this.

In most cases, for international students, Ausyfish must sponsor students entry visors to Australia. A condition of the Training and Research Visa issued by Australian Immigration Department requires that no payments be made to students.

  • You will also notice that we charge short term students for work experience at Ausyfish. We do not charge long term students as once they have been here for over a month we can then begin to benefit from their work activities.
  • You will be feeding, grading, counting and harvesting fish from in ground earth ponds on a daily basis.
  • You will be packing live  for shipping several time week.
  • You will be spawning fish almost daily. (Seasonal)
  • You will be responsible for the care of almost 200 tanks holding many types of fish including raising fry in these tanks. This will include water quality maintenance and disease diagnosis and management.
  • You should read all the pages of our web site. This will give you a full understanding of what we do, and therefore what you will be doing.
  • If you would like to apply for work experience time at Ausyfish, send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Click to see where we are, and how to get here.

Bookings for these dates have been received;


September 7th to November 12th Peter Emanuel (Australia)

November 13th to November 27th Aimee Beardsmore (Australia)

November 27th to December 10th Jayde Rankin & Courtney Innes (Australia)


December 28 (2006) to January 21st Kyle (Australia)

22nd January to 18th February Luke Austin (Australia)

March 19th to July 7th Roman Delacour & Julien Maniere (France)

July 10th to September 29th Louis Esteve (France)

October 1st - 22nd  Mick Tweedie  (Australia)

October  23rd to January (2007) 14th Asier & Maria (Spain)


January 15th - 31st January Lachlan Judd (Australia)

February 1st to 21st - Anna Do & Allan Hsieh Australia  (Australia)

July  1st to   1st of August  Mark Skoroszewski (Australia)

October 14th to November 28th Koji and Natsuko (Japan)

November 27th to Dec 27th Sarah Ng (Malaysia)


November (2007) 28th - 25th April - Alin Aguilar (Mexico)

May 20th - June 6th - Behrouz Boroomand (Iran)

July 1st- 31st July Kris Bell - (Australia)

December 1st -19th December Mark Purmalis (Australia)


January 8th - February 8th  Louise Kirk & Robert Barron (Australia)

May 12th to November 30th Antoine Cavarec (France)

May 12th to November 30th Dimitri Huin (Belgium)

August 10th - August 28th Ryan L'Estrange (Australia)

December 1st - 18th Wilson Liaw (Australia)

December 1st - 18th Joe Lee (Australia)


January 11th to 7th February  Troyden Ratcliffe (Australia)

February15th  to June 15th  Kimberly Packard (Swaziland)

September 19th to September 22nd Bryce Lockett (Australia)

October 25th to December 10th  Christopher Wilson (Australia)

November 22nd to December 22nd Josh Bracken (Australia)


December 22rd to January 6th Chil Yong Tan (Australia)

January 10th to - 28th  Benjamin Punch (Australia)

January 10th to - 28th  Paul Mock (Australia)

January 29th - February 25th Matthew Hoskin (Australia)

January 30th to February 12th Gillian Lawrence (Australia)

February 14th to February 24th Gareth Welch (Australia)

March7th - 18th Lenin Raj (India)

March 12th to June 27th Michael Manca (France)

July 4th to July 18th Leana Andonopoulos (Australia)

July 4th toJuly 25th Suzanne Booker (USA)

July 25th to September 9th Alexandre Parisot (France)

September 10th  to November 4th Luke Cocks (Australia)

December 5th to December 11th Ikue Nakamura (Australia)

December 1st to December 15th Ting Yihui (Melissa) (Australia)


January 2nd to January15th Matt Samuel (Australia)

January 2nd to January15th Marianna Datsenko (Australia)

March 12th to April 20th Dan Norris (England)

April 23rd to May 7th Morissey Kul (Australia)

May 8th to August 8th Mark Kawun (Australia)

August 13th to September 23rd Laurie Dangerfield (Australia)

September 24th to September 29th Edward Moorehouse (Australia)

October 25th 2012 to March 25th 2013 Kalai Selvan (Malaysia)


June 29th to July 12th Daniela Vozner (Australia)

July 12th to September 1st Marnie Redhead (Australia)

September 1st to October 14th Lauri Hogan (Australia)

October 15th to December 20th Moris Gojanovic (Croatia) 

December 20th to January 15th Olivier Goetz (France)


January 13th to February 21st Gabriel Silva (Brazil)

January 15th to March 15th Jan Klein (Germany)

March 27th to April 27th Greg Quartarollo (Australia)

June 30th to July 26th Dale Horne (Australia)

October 7th to October 17th Matthew Rayner (Australia)

November 24th to December 19th Angus Harding (Australia)


January 12th to April 12th Valentin Eckart (Germany)

January 5th to January 30th Joe Pearce (England)

September 27th to October 9th - 23rd November 4th December Katherine Ingold (Australia)

December 7th to10th January Connor Wass (Australian)

December 14th to 13th January Emily Becker (Australian)


January 13th to 2nd March Emmy Pantel- Jouve (France)

May 9th to 24 June Theodore Pung  (Signapore)

September 5th to 7th October Jeremy Van Ginneken (The Netherlands)

October 10th to 20th January Martin Nash (Australia)

December 12th to 23rd Stacy Khaw and Jun Qiang Auyeong (Hong Kong)


January 25th to 25th February Peter Oberle (Germany)

February 6th to March 3rd Charlie Walker (England)

March 30th to July 10th AnnKathrin Gebhardt (Germany)

June 16th to 25th July Stuart Tolley (England)

October 1st to January 26th Jonas Fuchs (Netherlands)

November 1st to December 31st Donnie Sonier (Canada)


January 6th to 6th of February Marina Azevedo (Brazil)

March 25th to 31st May Remy Dardare (Australian)

June 24th to 24th August James Maguire (UK)

September 24th toDecember 14th Michael Gallagher (Scotland)

December 14th to January 14th  Akshay Jayavant(Australia)


February 28th to May  Kirby Chen (Singapore)

September 9th to October 4th James Maguire (UK)

Below Are A Few Words From Previous Students:



Time off by Annkathrin Gebhardt

Hello everyone, my name is Annkathrin. I am from Germany and I worked for Ausyfish for three months. I had a great time on the farm, but also I had lots of fun while discovering the beautiful Fraser Coast on the weekends.

My first trip was a one day tour to Lady Musgrave Island.

Bruce, the Perch Man, dropped me at the marina in Bundaberg early in the morning and I got on board of a modern catamaran, which took us to the lagoon of the island. After visiting the paradise-like small island, where I took lots of amazing photos, we did a tour on a glass-bottom boat and ended the day with snorkelling on the colourful and vibrant reef, where we spotted countless beautiful fish as well as some turtles.

As my second trip I visited Fraser Island, a stunning island not far away from Hervey Bay. After taking the ferry there, I, and the rest of the group got on a safari bus that took us on a rumbling tour through the dense rainforest. We visited the beautiful Lake Mackenzie with its turquoise and crystal clear water, then we walked to Lake Wabby, hidden between enormous sand dunes that make you feel like you stranded on an oasis in the middle of the dessert. The day ended with a really tasty buffet in the Eurong Beach resort and we got a good night of rest. The next day we visited some stunning viewpoints like Indian Head and the Maheno Shipwreck and some of us took the opportunity to attend a scenic flight around the island. I have never seen such clear creeks like I have on Fraser Island and it was a simply amazing and wonderful tour through the various and stunning ecosystems present there. I can only advise everyone who visits Ausyfish to do some of those tours on the weekend, as you only seldom have a chance to see such breath-taking landscapes and as it completes your aussie experience there.

Look at the video of each of these adventures here. 

After I finish at Ausyfish I am flying to Cairns and then travel south down the Queensland

Working Experience Kalai (Carl)

Hi Everyone!

Before I start sharing my work experience in Ausyfish, I would like to introduce myself first. My name is Kalai and here I’m known as Carl. I’m from Malaysia. I’m in my final semester of my final year pursuing my studies in ‘Diploma in Fisheries’ which is a 3 year programme. After 2 ½ year completing my studies, a 6 months industrial training was the only thing left in obtaining my graduation scroll. Coming from a middle class family, completing my industrial training in overseas is nothing but impossible for me. However, it all changed when I found out about Ausyfish. I contacted them and tried my chance and here I am now, at the last week of my industrial training which I had done for a period of 6 months ! ( 24th of October 2012 – 24th of March 2013)

My working experience started at the end of the spring season, entering summer where the workload was getting tremendous. We did loads of Australian Native Freshwater Fish spawning such as Sleepy Cods, Silver Perch, Jade Perch, Coal Grunters and a few others. It’s a long cycle starting from harvesting the broodstocks, injecting them and waiting for the larvae to hatch and stocking them into ponds before pulling out the fingerlings-sized fish for customers. Apart from this I was also responsible in maintaining and keeping up the ornamental fish. To be precise, I was greatly involved in the management (feeding all the fish in tanks and also in the ponds) , breeding & producing (rainbows mainly and other freshwater fish), marketing (packing and selling fish to customers), preparation ( before packing live fish), harvesting (multiple ornamental fish ponds and also freshwater fish ponds not forgetting harvesting for broodstocks as well), quality control (mainly when packing fish to other countries), packaging (tactics and techniques used to make sure every fish is still alive on arrival), processing (preparing frozen feed for fish using live food such as freshwater artemia), treatment (use of all types of chemicals for almost all types of diseases and infections) and monitoring (almost all the fish tanks in the hatchery complex making sure everything is under control). I also learned other essential things such as producing a 40 meter harvest net, fixing certain things such as pumps and pipelines and so much more.


The other thing that I must share with everyone is the hospitality given to me by Sambell’s family. First of all is the accommodation. I was given a really comfortable room to stay for this period of 6 months where there was a television, internet connection, refrigerator, kitchen and also air-conditioning. Not forgetting the delicious meals that were provided to me by the family. The best thing is about the bonding and the relationship that I had with this family. I got really close to the family and we shared a lot of things about our past, present and future. Now, I’m definitely going to miss them and I’m very sure that I will be coming back for a visit when things are good in the future. The other thing that I’m really happy about is the 1 week holiday given by the farm owner for me to go to Sydney for a break. All I can say about Sydney is it’s a colourful and vibrant city filled with so much excitements, mind blowing buildings and entertainment. I can never thank the Sambell’s family enough for giving me this unforgettable holiday.

I personally believe that no one is perfect and everyone makes mistakes. So do I, but I learn from my mistakes. The people that I was working with were always ready to share their knowledge, guide me consistently and help me to improve. They were always ready to accept my ideas and to listen to my opinions and I can say that they are the best workmates I have ever had in my life. I would like to take this opportunity to also thank some of the staffs namely Darren Tolcher, Laurie Dangerfield, Anthony Geertsema and the farm owner itself Bruce Sambell for assisting me all this while. The knowledge that they have kindly given me is priceless. Thanks guys!

For the students that are currently viewing this page and looking forward to have your working experience done here in Ausyfish, things that you should always have in mind when working in Ausyfish is to be polite and give the best you’ve got. Always keep this in your mind ‘the more you work, the more you learn’ and ‘please ask if you are not sure’

Now, I’m going to end my industrial training in a way more than I could have hoped for because I managed to learn a lot from Ausyfish, made an impression to workmates and developed a strong friendship and understanding with all the staffs here and in fact my industrial training is a success! From the bottom of my heart, I thank again all those who were helpful and encouraging in making my dream come true. It was indeed a pleasure sharing my experience with all of you and thanks for reading patiently. Have a nice day everyone!



I learnt so much… Baptiste Leroy from France

Gooday mate!

I’m a French student from the south of France, I went in Ausyfish to learn about fish farming, the entire technical thing I can learn from it. I came also with a subject, parasites of fishes.

But what I did there it’s just more than learn about how to grow and sell some fish, it’s a real way of life. Because you live with the family you share all the moments with them, the good, and the less good…

About the work: it’s a family business, so you have to be always ready to give a hand, in winter there is no real rush, but you work always outside look after the level of water of the ponds, feed the fish, create new material for the tanks, clean the place, packing some fish (at anytime of the day, or the night…). In fact there is no work indoors!!!

About the life: The Sambell family is a very nice one, they help you as much as they can to make your time in their place as comfortable as possible. The place is in the bush so you will meet some animals that belong to this environment like frogs, toads, snakes, kangaroos and a lot of fishes!!!

To conclude, my time here was so good that I’m thinking about coming back when I can afford it again…

Thanks a lot the Sambell family.

See ya!!!

 Baptiste LEROY This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


Working experience at Ausyfish by Marcel and Mark from Holland

Let's introduce our self. We are Marcel and Mark, we are coming from Holland were we doing an environmental science study. In the third year of our four years during course we have to do a working experience for five months at a company that have something to do with the environment.

So mark and I were sick and tired of the bad weather in Holland and we decided to find a working experience place in a nice warm country. We both were interested in Australia for a long time as well as the aquaculture and the idea to find something there was a bit of a challenge for us. After a lot of searching in the Internet we founded a couple of fish farms. Only Ausyfish was offering us the accommodation, food, place to sleep etc.

So we had a place to do our experience! After everything was arranged with the university and Ausyfish, it was just a matter of waiting until we could leave cold Holland and go to the biggest experience of our life.

We left Holland with 4 degrees Celsius on the 4th of February. And we arrived the 6th of February with 41 degrees Celsius. A really big change for us, and it took us a week to get over it. After we were used to the heat and the jetlag we saw how different this country was compared with Holland. Australia is so big, so many animals and has such nice weather. So many tropical fish and fingerlings we saw, it was amazing for us. We met the family, who is very nice and hospital, learned what kind of work there should be done on a fish farm. We found out how nice the beaches were on the coastline.

Meanwhile we saw already a tiny part of big Australia and we both love it. The most impressive thing we saw so far was Sydney during a one-week holiday. And we still have another month to go. So who knows what else we will experience. After that six weeks holiday and we will travel with the car we bought to Cairns. From there we fly back to Holland were we have to finish our education and maybe start with the aquaculture business.

If you are interested in aquaculture, new experiences and want to see a beautiful country we can recommend Ausyfish as the perfect working experience place.

Good luck and greetings,

Mark and Marcel


My experience at Ausyfish by Mat, from France.

Hi my ausy name’s Mat, I have been a work experience for four months, so I think I have a few things to tell you. I’m a student in freshwater aquaculture and aquariology at Nancy, France; this is my third year and eventually the last of my studies.

All I wanted was a change in my life see something else, do what I liked: aquarium fish farming, work in shorts and tee shirt under the sun. My other concern was to improve my English level. So after all those enquiries I focused on Australia, while searching on the internet I found this web site. The first page was asking for work experience, I send an email and it was done. This is the only place that was concerned by an exchange of information and not just exploitation of my labour (and I have been exploited by previous places); it had a place to sleep and would feed me, the holy grail of work experience if I can say.

Everything was set up and here I go down under to see what it’s like. I left at the start of spring and arrived in autumn, what a change to see how different things were. What I did here was great and exactly what I was hoping for, my project was to start a new species on the farm but it didn’t take all my time, so I could get involved in all sorts of activities as breeding rainbows, strange rosy barbs and all sort of Australian native fish, most of the time we were sorting out all the aquarium fish we were harvesting for sale, I even set up the office fish tank as I wanted and tried to keep some larvae in tanks, I did everything I had and wanted to do and it was brilliant.

Living on the farm in the bush was very different from life in Europe but much healthier, drinking rain water was a surprise, having a shower with dam water in company of all kind of frogs was another. All those little details that made my life different and full of surprises was part of the greatest experience of my life.

Meeting different people was another part, the family was very kind with me, I was even invited to the engagement party of Alan, the owner’s son. This place has taught me so much that I can’t believe it lasted only four months, I learned a lot in fish farming and it gave me the idea of doing the same type of work in my farm one day, hopefully.

This place is the new generation of respectful fish farming, not intensive but well managed not to waste and not to destroy the environment, even though producing enough for a family to live on and invest.

I am now looking back to this experience with great respect to the Sambell family, since they even accepted when I asked if my girlfriend could come at the end of my period, as we had planned to travel around Australia together. The other thing was the cherry on the cake as I call it, a trip in the bush to collect and fish for a week, camping in the most beautiful natural places, along the river.

I was glad to talk to you about my experience; I am now in the bush at the last day of my trip with the owner Bruce Sambell and definitely recommend you this place if you want to have a real adventure in one of the last really natural places on earth, good luck. Mat.


Below are a few words from Mat's Mother.

Dear Sambell family, 

I want to thank you so much for the fantastic work experience and the countless good times to gave to Mathieu during his stay with you, including hosting his beloved Caroline !

Congratulations also for the work experience e-logbook which allowed me to share his time and see him smiling all along (at least on the pictures !). I am sure that is was not easy and rosy every day, but such is life, and it is good for him to learn that too ! Claire and Violette enjoyed immensely seeing their brother on line, and it made time shorter and easier for them too. Your idea of this section of web site went straight to my heart ! I spent 2 1/2 years in Central and Latin America way back in my youth, and my parents had to wait sometimes for weeks to get news or photos ! I know now it was probably not as comfortable for them as it was for me, when I could just on a click take stock of how Mathieu was. Keep up the good idea for the sake of other parents !