The Fishermen

The practice of catching the wild Atlantic salmon in Scotland’s estuaries and rivers dates back centuries. Using a variety of traps, spears and nets, salmon were caught predominantly in rivers until the beginning of the 19th century when prohibitions began to appear and netting was largely restricted to beaches, river-mouths and the shallow waters off the coast.

Salmon were then intercepted by fixed engines known as stake nets, jumpers or bag nets, as well as by net and coble fishing, a method which employed a flat-bottomed boat and a sweep net in the rivers. Gradually, more-and-more restrictions have been placed on the activities of the netsmen, so that now only a few retain licences to fish this way.