NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

2007/1/22

三重 海女さん Mie Amasan Mie Women Divers

Jp En


Mie Prefecture is well known for the many women divers (amasan) who, historically, have caught seafood and famous marine products.

At the end of World War II, Mie Prefecture was reputed to have more than 6000 amasan in the Toba and Shima regions. However, due to the reduction in fishing resources, an unstable and sluggish market, and the harsh working conditions, there have been fewer and fewer women read to do the job. Today there are only about 1300 aging, yet still active, amasan.

The amasan's main targets are awabi (abalone), sazae (turban shells), and namako (sea cucumbers). A few skilled and experienced amasan are able to capture iseebi (lobsters) without a scratch. The fishing methods these amasan use are invaluable to the ecology of the sea as they do not encourage over-fishing.

It can be said that the amasan of Mie are a living link to fishing methods and practises of the past.

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