The Nearshore Beach Fishermen of Yachigashira, Japan:
Fishing Gear


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These guys forage visually in the subtidal, hanging over the side, observing the bottom through these glass-bottom viewboxes.

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They use various devices on long poles to access the bottom, such as this 3 pronged spear, which I think is used for sea urchins, and flatfish.

They hold the viewbox with their mouth, by clamping their teeth around the white bar. I believe the straps on the left are for shading, or perhaps helping to hold the box on their head. This leaves their hands free to manipulate spears and other devices. I'm told that they traditionally rowed with their feet while hanging over the side and using their hands to spear, although now they tend to use elecric trolling motors.

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I think this grappling hook might be used to snare large brown kelps off the bottom, but I'm not sure.

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These hoopnets were mounted on the bows of some of the boats. I'm not sure if they are traps or for holding live catch. I note there are bouys with lines all over the beach, so presumably they do set some kind of fish trap out.

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Contact:  Fritz Funk (fritzf@alaska.net)