Fishing Lore of Tobi. Peter W. Black 1968, 2017

The Nets of Tobi

1. Ugh (casting net)
Esobio has one. The mesh is 1 inch, height is 12 feet; diameter of bottom is 24 feet, and 3 inch lead sinkers are placed every 3 inches around the bottom. Made from cotton line.

2. Fen
There are two types of Fen

a. Fen er Bub, used for Fen (see Day Fishing Method 21) made from thin rami fiber.
b.Fen er Mahipihip, used for Taturamar (see Day Fishing Method 29), made from thick coconut fiber line.

Net:  Fen
The top is open, the bottom closed.
Esobio—diameter at top 15 inches; depth 1 foot; mesh 2-1/4 inches.
Matias—2 inch mesh; 12 inch diameter; 12 inch depth; 8 holes down; 9 holes across; 18 inch line for sinker.

3. Pahas
There are two kinds of pahas, pahas and uwarai. There are no uwarai now.

a. Pahas. Esobio and Nemesio both have a pahas.

Net:  Pahas

Nemesio—mesh 1-1/4 inch; length 20 feet; height 4 feet. Handmade wooden floats on top, every 3 holes. 1-1/2 inch lead sinkers ½ inch apart attached to bottom tuna line.

Esobio—mesh 1-1/4 inch; length 30 feet; width 18 inches; wooden pegs every 2 inches, sinkers every 1 inch.

b. Uwarai
Mesh 1-1/2-2 inches; length 30 to 100 feet; width 5-6 feet.

4. Cheu

There are four kinds of Cheu. Esobio has one of each and Matias has a Cheu Turumat.

a. Cheu Turumat
Matias—depth 24 inches; top diameter 16 inches; mesh 1 inch.
Esobio—top 25 inches from handle to other side; 21 inches across; 16 inches deep; mesh 1-1/2 inch.

Net:  Cheu Turumat
Cheu Turumat can either be round like Matias’s or oblong like Esobio’s.
Short handle.
Used in Turumat (Night Fishing Method 8).

b. Cheu Mangah
Top must be oblong.
From handle across top 32 inches made from cotton or coconut fiber line.
Depth 48 inches
Mesh 1 inch
Has a long handle.
Used for catching flying fish (see Day Fishing Method 41).

c. Cheu ru Hou
Top must be oblong. Made only from coconut fiber line.
Top 32 inches
Depth 48 inches
Mesh 1 inch
Has a long handle.
Used for catching Tir (see Day Fishing Method 40).

d. Cheu Tir
Top must be oblong.
Made from either coconut fiber or cotton line.
Top 32 inches
Depth 48 inches
Mesh ¼ inch
Has a long handle.
Used for catching Tir (see Day Fishing Method 40).

The Story of Ugh  

Patricio says that Palauans got their casting nets or Ugh from the Saipanese who learned how to make them from the Spanish, because they tie their nets with a granny knot.

When he was in Angaur after the war, he saw a U.S. Navy man fixing a net with the same knot he had learned as a boy—the square knot.

Note: a translation problem probably occurred here. It is unlikely Patricio meant granny knot, which could not hold. It is too late now to figure out what he was talking about.   PWB 2005.

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Updated: January 19, 2017