Chinese Fishing Net

The Chinese fishing nets are one of the important attractions in Kerala. It is because of its unique style of architecture with wood, mainly teak wood. Its famous for its massiveness and mode of operation. The Chinese fishing nets locally known as Cheena vala are fishing nets that are fixed land installations for an unusual form of fishing(shore operated lift nets). Each net spreads over an area of about 20 meters. Each structure is at least 10 m high and comprises a cantilever with an outstretched net suspended over the sea and large stones suspended from ropes as counterweights at the other end. Each installation is operated by a team of up to six fishermen. The system is sufficiently balanced that the weight of a man walking along the main beam is sufficient to cause the net to descend into the sea. The net is left for a short time, possibly just a few minutes, before it is raised by pulling on ropes. Rocks, each 30 cm or so in diameter are suspended from ropes of different lengths. As the net is raised, some of the rocks one-by-one come to rest on a platform thereby keeping everything in balance. Each installation has a limited operating depth. Consequently, an individual net cannot be continually operated in tidal waters. Different installations will be operated depending on the state of the tide.

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