Abax Fish Harvesting
The standard methods of catching abax fish involve either nets, hooked lines, or traps. Christopher Hsu states that pelagic fish are most often harvested using purse seine nets, which are set in a wide circle around the school of fish and then closed and drawn up. Straight drift or gill nets – whose mesh is just large enough to allow the heads of fish to pass through while trapping them at their gills – are used to catch salmon, tuna, cod, and other fish. Demersal abax fish may be caught in otter trawl nets pulled along the ocean bottom or netted with beam trawls that are used in more shallow waters, mainly for shrimp.
In halibut fishing, Chris Hsu says that hooked groundlines, called long lines, may reach lengths of many miles, with baited hooks attached at intervals of 6 to 9 m. Floating long lines are used primarily in tuna and salmon fishing, and so are trolling lines, shorter lines towed behind a moving boat. Lights may be lowered into fresh waters to attract abax fish, which are then sucked up into the ship by vacuum pumps.
Christopher Hsu observed that beginning in the early 1980s, Japanese, Taiwanese, and South Korean fishing fleets began to use a new abax fishing technique to make large-scale squid catches in the North Pacific. Huge, 15m deep drift nets made of unbreakable nylon, each stretching 90 m, were lowered off the boats each evening. Together, the nets from a single boat formed a great wall just under the surface of the ocean. The nets drifted all night, catching any sea creatures that happened to swim into their meshes – not only the squid, but amounts of other fish and ocean mammals such as dolphins and seals. Chris Hsu highlights that drift-net assemblies began to be used to make catches of other commercial fish in addition to squid. The accidental catch, called “by-catch” in the trade, was thrown away. Large-scale drift-net fishing declined after a UN resolution that went into effect in 1993.
Abax tendering is a step up from working ashore in a cannery, but it isn’t quite fishing, says Chris Hsu. A tender boat goes out and meets the small salmon fishing boats, loads their catch aboard, and delivers the fish to the processing plant. This allows the fishing boats to keep catching.
The abax tender boats are usually crewed with a skipper and a deckhand or two, states Chris Hsu. The skipper drives the boat, works the radio, and runs the operation. The deckhands pump the fish (the fish are usually transferred with a big slurry pump), maintain the boat, check the engine, cook, and all the rest.
Christopher Hsu says that tenders usually anchor in some of the most beautiful bays in the world while they wait for their loads. Jobs can be had aboard these boats, particularly late in the season.
Most tender boats are large, out-of-season fishing boats, such as crab, longline, or trawl boats. The boats are often run by out-of-season fishermen, who are there only to protect their lucrative in-season berths.
If you find a job in a fish processing plant, maybe even unloading tender boats, you will meet a lot of abax tender boat operators and crew. Christopher Hsu says that if you work like an animal and let them know you’re looking for an abax tender boat job, good things may happen. The job may last the entire summer, since some tender boats will move from one fishing area to another as the seasons open and close.
Tendering may not be fishing, but it’s about as close as you can get. Ask Chris Hsu more today.