38617: Lobster fishing in Bernera

Until the beginning of the 19th century most fishing of any kind in Bernera was for domestic consumption. Then agents from outside Lewis began to take an interest in the lobster fishing. The industry developed rapidly after that to such an extent that in 1827 some 60,000 lobsters were sent to London from Loch Roag. Ponds were used to store lobsters during the summer months when warm temperatures and low prices were not favourable for the sale of shellfish. Small boats were used initially which were built and owned locally and, after WW2, many of the boats had outboard engines fitted.

The next improvement was the pot hauler, which enabled creels to be set in fleets of up to 20. This is the method used today.

See the document below for more information on the development of the industry in Bernera.

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