My Space

Vador Manera

Fisherman and educator

Vador is a fisherman, as was his grandfather before him and one that might be termed “sustainable”. Over the years and with the use of modern techniques, the sea is becoming “emptied” of fish, and Vador has been witness to increasingly fewer fish but more and more plastic, wheels and waste. He believes it is time for a “biological rest” to allow the sea to restock. Also, if people tried out more species they would not always be eating the same type of fish, and things might have the chance to even out.

From March to June, Vador goes fishing for all kinds of fish: rufina, bream, snapper, and more.... In July and August, he doesn’t take his boat out, as there are too many tourists and it makes the type of local fishing he does, so close to the shore, all but impossible. However, in September he is back out there with his net, looking for local tuna or Atlantic bonito, as he has done all his life. In October and November, depending on the weather, it’s time to head for dry dock and clean and ready the boat for the next season. Early in the year he heads out to catch octopus, just to keep things going through winter. With the arrival of spring from the month of March, the cycle at sea begins again.

Yet, Vador also has another passion: laughter! So, one day he decided to invent a show-cum-workshop to make children aware of what happens at sea and the need to recycle and not throw plastic away and to consume fish responsibly. Thus was born Pescaplàstik, a show where a clown makes children laugh while they learn that it is important to respect and care for our environment, especially marine life.

We met Vador on his boat, surrounded by all the gear he needs for his work, just after a morning out fishing at the pier at Port de la Selva (Alt Emporda).

1. Illuminated buoy, to signal “fishermen at work”.

2. Basket, for the long-line tackle.

3. Hand nets, to pull in the fish from the lines.

4. Octopus, sold to help fund the fishermen’s guild.

5. Trammel nets, for lobsters and crayfish, and scorpion fish...

6. Hoop net, for octopus.

7. Black bucket, to fill the blue baskets with ice.

8. Iron or anchor, in the event the boat sinks it will stop it from drifting away.

9. Lobsters, highly-prized for making a seafood stew.

10. Forkbeard (mòllera) and sargo (sard), local fish best baked in the oven.

11. Eels, great for broth and rice dishes.

12. Ropes, to steady and fix the lines and nets.

13. Traditional fishing boat, Seven-metre long, wooden boat from the ’70s. It uses €150 worth of diesel a month.

14. The sea, Vador’s first love.

15. Anchor buoy, we can’t lose the anchor!

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