Skip to main content

Tanya Savory

Cleaner Fish Coordinator
Mowi Canada East
Tanya Savory au travaille

Tanya Savory using an YSI meter to monitor water temperature, oxygen content and salinity levels.

Tanya Savory au travaille

Tanya Savory using an YSI meter to monitor water temperature, oxygen content and salinity levels.

Location Born
Location Now
Education Pathway

Tanya Savory is a Cleaner Fish Coordinator for Mowi Canada East.

About me

I was born/grew up in: I was born in Harbour Breton, NL

I now live in: Belleoram, NL

I completed my training/education at: I have earned my Technical Certificate in Aquaculture (TCA) & Certificate in Aquaculture Management (CAM) from the Marine Institute of Memorial University, Newfoundland and Labrador.

What I do at work

I am responsible for the health and wellbeing of our lumpfish. In salmon aquaculture, lumpfish are known as cleaner fish. Cleaner fish make life for other fish better by eating things that could cause them harm. Lumpfish eat sea lice that can live on farmed fish.

Part of my job is to monitor the cleanliness of “fish hides” and lumpfish feeding equipment. Fish hides are places in the cages where the cleaner fish can rest when they are not eating or swimming. These hides can sometimes tangle or snag and need to be untangled. The hides need to be hanging vertically in the cages. Divers use a Go-Pro when they do inspection dives. With the help of this footage, we can monitor the hides and make adjustments as necessary. We change the feed amounts as the water temperature changes.

I also organize carry out marine site inspections on sites that are using cleaner fish (lumpfish). Dead or weak lumpfish are taken from the cages during site inspection dives. We examine them and check their stomach contents. We look for consumed sea lice or food pellets, to ensure they are eating and healthy.

I monitor the temperature, oxygen and salinity (salt content) of the water. I also monitor the amount of food the lumpfish consume. For water quality monitoring, we use equipment that records the temperature, oxygen content and salinity at each required depth.

Another part of my job is to coordinate transfer of new fish, including managing crews, vessels & equipment. We stock new fish by weight and biomass. Math is important in determining how many fish can be stocked per cage. Math is also used to calculate the daily feed requirements.

The combination of all skill sets (STEM) is necessary to perform my daily duties. Each task requires one or all elements. Our staff all work together on a daily basis. We help organize travel to and from site, and sometimes assist each other with site activities.

I sometimes have to consult my supervisor or Fish Health staff for advice if there is a situation that we cannot immediately resolve. My job is never boring! I recently began training with an ROV for underwater monitoring, net inspections, etc.

My career path is

Many years of hard work and determination has gotten me to where I am today!

I began as a complete greenhorn and worked my way up. Over the last 15 years, I have taken part in many courses and training activities. Through this, I have earned my Technical Certificate in Aquaculture (TCA) & Certificate in Aquaculture Management (CAM). Both are red seal diplomas.

I have loved being on the ocean since I was a small child. This has added to my immediate and continued interest in aquaculture. While growing up, I always spent my weekends fishing lobster and cod with my dad. He influenced me in getting a job working with fish 😊

I worked for 13 years as a Site Manager. The position of Manager of the lumpfish program at Mowi Canada East came up. I applied and then got the job. As this is a new species to use in the aquaculture industry there has been a lot of learning on the job.

In addition to learning about using the lumpfish as a cleaner fish, the job has presented other challenges. This is especially the case as I am the first woman to become a Site Manager for Cooke Aquaculture & Northern Harvest Sea Farms. However, with constant drive and determination, sometimes stubbornness, I continue to overcome them!

I am motivated by

There are no dull days in aquaculture! Each day is an adventure, and there is always the potential to learn something new.

I get to visit different sites around the province where we have farms. As these sites are located on the coast, the views are breathtaking. Traveling from place to place means I get to meet new people. I also get to catch up with friends and coworkers I have worked with over the past 15 years. Fresh air, salt water and the freedom of being out on the water almost every day is a reward in itself! Some days the weather can be harsh, but we still manage to smile and laugh during the day.

My favorite thing about my job is definitely working with the fish. They are so cute and very sociable! Getting to study and educate myself about a new species is a great challenge. I recently started training with an ROV for underwater inspections. It’s so exciting!

I’ve always strived to do my best in every job or task I’ve tackled. The expansion of aquaculture has given me the opportunity to do this, in the many fields of work that are available.

How I affect peoples’ lives

Using lumpfish in aquaculture is new. As a result, the learning opportunities are endless.

The lumpfish’s natural behavior is to eat sea lice. We use this behavior to reduce the stress on the salmon. This also reduces the environmental risk by eliminating chemical lice treatments. It is a win-win! This is very important work and everyone benefits. It will take some time to get the practice of using cleaner fish established and get them on sites where we want them, but it is coming!

Outside of work I

When the food fishery is open, I spend my weekends out in boat fishing. A relaxing night at home with a good movie is always nice.

I have contributed countless hours of volunteer work in and around the community helping with various organizations & fundraisers.

My favorite outdoor activity in winter is snowshoeing. A cozy fire in the back yard fire pit is my favorite summer activity, plus swimming when its warm enough!

My advice to others

If you are interested in a career in aquaculture, my advice would be GO FOR IT!

There are endless learning opportunities! Even after 15 years, I still learn something different almost every day. Watching the salmon grow from tiny smolt to harvest size is amazing. Knowing you have contributed to their growth and overall safety is so rewarding! I have made so many good friends and acquaintances over the years.  It is amazing!  It will have its challenges like anything else, but it is so worth it. After 15 years I still love my job 😊and I look forward to more learning opportunities in the future!

When I was a student, I enjoyed:
  • Art
  • Computer Science
  • Geography
  • Industrial Arts/Shop Programs
  • Literature and English language arts
  • Math
  • Physical Education/Health
  • Science
When I was a student, I would have described myself as someone who:
  • Brought people together
  • Always wanted to be outside
  • Liked helping people
  • Played on a sports team
  • Enjoyed working with my hands
  • Was motivated by success
  • Wanted to be in charge
  • Liked being given specific instructions
  • Engaged in volunteer activities
  • Liked reading
  • Felt at home in the outside, natural environment
  • Was really creative
  • Felt great satisfaction in getting good grades
  • Learned best "by doing"
  • Liked to design or build things
  • Engaged in activities such as fishing, berry picking and hunting

Related Topics

Partners

Newfoundland Aquaculture Industry Association

Let's Talk Science would like to thank the Newfoundland Aquaculture Industry Association (NAIA) for connecting us with the individual profiled above.

The Newfoundland Aquaculture Industry Association (NAIA) is a member-based organization that represents the interests of seafood farmers and their suppliers in Newfoundland and Labrador. NAIA advocates on behalf of the industry, enables important research and development, and shares relevant information on current issues and promotes the responsible development of the aquaculture industry.

NAIA Farmed Fresh

Explore Career Profiles

  • Rhiannon Cooper headshot taken outside with trees and plans in the background

    Rhiannon Cooper (she/her)

    Epidemiologist

    I monitor the patterns and trends of infectious diseases across the province.
  • Khashayar Farzam headshot

    Khashayar Farzam (he/him)

    Emergency Medicine Doctor

    As an ER doctor, I take care of any patient who comes through the hospital door for literally anything!
  • Peter Vlasveld headshot

    Peter Vlasveld

    Intermediate Software Developer

    I write backend code for web apps that help in Cyclica's drug discovery efforts.
  • Andrea Brack recycling at work

    Andrea Brack

    Environmental and Regulatory Team Coordinator

    I lead a team of environmental professionals at a large petrochemical manufacturing facility.
  • Pamela Power photo taken outside in winter with trees in background

    Pamela Power (she/her)

    Water Resources Specialist

    I provide technical review of projects that may affect water resources to ensure your community’s rights and interests are being considered and protected.
  • Sara Knox headshot

    Sara Knox (she/her)

    Assistant Professor (biometeorology)

    I study ways to restore and protect ecosystems to help fight climate change.
  • Samantha Yammine

    Samantha Yammine (she/her)

    Science Communicator

    I create and share engaging science content on social media.
  • Corey Nislow headshot

    Corey Nislow (he/him)

    Professor and Genomics Research Chair

    I study how drugs work and how an individual’s genetic makeup can affect their response to drug treatment.
  • L. Creighton Avery looking at specimen using a microscope in her lab.

    L. Creighton Avery

    Osteoarchaeologist

    I examine human skeletal remains from archaeological sites to learn about their lives.
  • Yetong Dong headshot wearing lab coat

    Yetong Dong

    Research Assistant/Graduate Student

    I am studying to become a scientific researcher.
  • Portrait de Andrea Goldson-Barnaby

    Andrea Goldson-Barnaby

    Head of the Food division

    I teach and do research on the topics of Food Chemistry and Food Processing.
  • Jo-Anne McArthur photographing hog in pen.

    Jo-Anne McArthur (she/her)

    Photojournalist, Founder

    I operate a non-profit media organization that shows the lives of animals in pictures.
  • Adrienne Ethier

    Adrienne Ethier

    Environmental Risk Assessment Specialist

    I am responsible for evaluating potential exposure risks to people and the environment near nuclear facilities and mines.
  • Alyssa Smith headshot

    Alyssa Smith

    PhD Candidate in Cognitive Science

    I am researching how people’s attention is affected by factors in everyday life such as taking medications.
  • Karen Fleming

    Karen Fleming (she/her)

    Simulation Educator

    I help create education and training experiences that contribute to safer environments for patients.
  • Portrait de Dr. Marcia Anderson

    Marcia Anderson (she/her)

    Physician and Vice-Dean Indigenous Health, Social Justice and Anti-Racism

    I am a medical doctor and I work to help create culturally safe healthcare that is free of racism.
  • Luke Humphries working with biological sample in his lab.

    Luke Humphries

    Director, Process Development

    I lead teams of scientists to discover and develop the best ways of making drug molecules for clinical trials.
  • Portrait de Sydney Robinson

    Sydney Robinson

    Biomedical Engineer and Entrepreneur

    I am an entrepreneur who used my engineering background to design a device that helps amputees do daily tasks in a more painless manner.
  • Allison Guitor in her lab at McMaster University.

    Allison Guitor

    Researcher - Antibiotic Resistance

    I study antibiotic resistance, which is what makes bacteria able to live in the presence of antibiotics.
  • Le Dr Harpreet Kochhar devant un ordinateur dans son bureau.

    Dr. Harpreet Kochhar

    President

    I am the head of the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC).