Longhouse - Front


Contemporarily, gill nets have almost replaced dip nets in the Fraser Canyon, and have largely extended into the middle and lower Fraser, where fish congregate in the slower eddies. Generally, the gill nets are attached to the end of a long pole, which is suspended above the river. The pole is braced with lines to maintain its position. The use of the pole in the gill netting is believed to be a recent invention-in the past, the nets were extended out into the river using a canoe, and supported in the centre with floats. The bottom portion of the net was weighted down using stone sinkers, which were ground from pebbles.

The basic premise for a gill net is that the net is created with holes that will allow fish to begin to swim through the holes, but not pass through easily, catching the fish around the gills. Once this has occurred, the net is pulled from the river with the fish. Gill nets are not as successful as dip nets, as there is less chance of actually catching fish, but are much easier to handle than the dip nets.

Drift nets are a form of gill net. They are typically used in the slower, wider areas of the Fraser, where they are allowed to float in the river without encountering too many obstacles.

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