Learning the Fishing Lingo
Need to brush up on your knowledge of fishing? Read the following terms and definitions, then quiz your family and friends to see how many they get right!
gill net: a net with various sized mesh to catch fish of different sizes
long-lining: using a trawl (a long line with baited hooks) to catch fish
crab pot: a trap specially designed to catch crab
inshore fisherman: a small-boat fisherman who fishes relatively close to the shore
trawl: a long line with shorter lines attached at intervals. The shorter lines (sud lines) have baited hooks for catching fish.
set: the placing of a trawl or net in the water to catch fish
prime berth: the best fishing ground close enough to shore for trap fishing.
banker: 1. a schooner once used to fish the offshore banks. 2. a man who fishes the offshore banks.
banking dories: stackable dories used in bank fishing.
boy: 1. an inexperienced man on his first fishing voyage to Newfoundland from England or Ireland.
cartel boat also carteel boat: an auxiliary boat used to transport fish.
cod net: a gill net specially made to catch codfish.
fall fishery: the hand lining fishery which takes place between September and December.
fish box: 1. the humourous name given to vessels that were used to transport fish to foreign ports.
floater: 1. a migratory fisherman who fishes the Labrador coast from a schooner, as opposed to a stationer, who fishes from the shore. 2. the schooner used by same.
inshore fishery: the business of prosecuting the fishery involving small boats closer to shore.
labrador afloat: these were the words at the bottom of the address on the envelope containing a letter to someone prosecution the Labrador fishery as a floater. These words were preceded by the name of the schooner aboard which the person was working.
long-liner: a decked fishing boat usually between 45 and 65 feet in length, used in various types of commercial fishing, including cod-netting, capelin-seining, crab-fishing, scallop-dragging and sealing.
make-and-break: a one cylinder gasoline engine that had a small battery and a coil to generate enough spark to ignite the gaseous mixture in the chamber
naked man also american man, cairn: a man-made landmark for navigation, usually made by piling stones on top of each other to make the shape of a human. These were once prevalent along the Labrador coast. They were very useful in determining one's location at sea.
newfoundland banks: any fishing banks in close proximity to Newfoundland and Labrador.
nose and tail of the grand bank: two portions of the Grand Banks' fishing grounds that extend into international waters.
plantation: the land and buildings, used by a planter to prosecute the fishery.
planter: early settler who built fishing stores, stages, etc., to prosecute the fishery, as opposed to the migratory fishermen from West Country, England.
roomer: a Newfoundland fisherman who prosecutes the Labrador fishery from premises on shore.
shareman: a man who shares in the profits of a fishing venture.
water haul: a net, trawl, seine or trap that is empty when hauled. "The fish are so scarce all I got was a waterhaul."