Sea Life

It’s supposed to be snowing right now – however, the skies are clearing and the wind is coming up. I spent some time out by the Lighthouse and then parked on Jacksons Breakwater to watch the various boats heading to work.

The first two vessels were heading to the salmon farm in Harbour de Lute (where the project to retrieve nets is taking place). They’re in the process of treating those poor fish for lice.

I will not comment on this. My feelings about these farms should be fairly evident by now. ๐Ÿ™‚

The third boat came to the Breakwater to pick up a young man I know and all of his diving gear. Divers are in short supply on this Island and more of the guys in their early 20s are starting to get trained.

They are needed constantly for a variety of reasons – to inspect boats when something seems to have gotten tangled in the propellers, to assist in building weirs, to look at the sea bottom for ghost gear and navigation hazards, and sometimes to inspect a cove before a fisherman tries to shutoff herring, etc. If there are only 1 or 2 available then things back up quickly. There’s good money to be made if you have a diving ticket.

Divers are also used for harvesting some seafood. One species in particular was the reason this young guy was being added to the crew for the day.

This discussion gives me an opportunity to add another term to my Campobello Dictionary. I’ve been hearing these words since I first arrived and it has taken more than 4 years for me to not cringe every time.

Kyle was heading out to harvest Whores’ Eggs. I kid you not. This term isn’t native to the island – the earliest use is attributed to a late 17th Century travel writer.

To the rest of us he is going to harvest Sea Urchins. I don’t know what they do with them and, luckily, have never had any appear at my back door so I haven’t had to figure it out. They are a big deal in these waters and sometimes boats will drag for them off my cove. Their population has apparently decreased along with pretty much all the fisheries in the past few years.

The original 18th Century (and most of the later) settlers here were from England and must have brought the term with them (the influence of a travel writer in those days was apparently enormous). I guess it just became part of the Island’s vocabulary. Still, I wish he’d put his creative naming talents to come up with a more attractive description. ๐Ÿ™‚

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