Traditional fishing method revived

Traditional fishing method revived

On May 21, Kenji Miyazato repairs a stonewall on Kohama Island.

May 26, 2012 Ryukyu Shimpo

On Kohama Island in Taketomi, 77 year-old Kenji Miyazato is working to revive a traditional fishing method called kasuku.
Miyazato said, “It will be a natural aquarium. I think that it could help children learn about the ocean.”

Kasuku is a fishing method that utilizes the tide. A stonewall was built in shallow water, and at low tide people would catch the fish trapped inside. About 30 kasuku have been identified around Kohama Island, but the stonewalls have fallen apart and none are still in use.

Instead of using rocky coral, a type of curved blockish stone called kubiri ishi was used in the walls. It is not known where the stone came from.

Miyazato owns a 500-meter long kasuku that was made by his ancestors. He makes use of the low tide to pile up stones one by one.

In the afternoon of May 21, he was at work repairing the stonewall by hand during the spring tide. He hopes that it will be complete by the end of the month.

(English translation by T&CT, Shinako Oyakawa and Mark Ealey)

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