The Nearshore Beach Fishermen of Yachigashira, Japan


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On the outskirts of bustling Hakodate on Japan's northern island of Hokkaido, I found this community of small boat fishermen, who appear to make their living by foraging the shallow subtidal areas for sea urchin, kelp, and flatfish. I was fascinated by their long, narrow wooden boats, simple lifestyle, and the contrast between the older wooden boats and the emerging fleet of more powerful and expensive fiberglass boats moored among them. On these pages I'll try to capture what I can of the fishery and its human dimension, and the many questions I've left unanswered.

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Contact:  Fritz Funk (fritzf@alaska.net)