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A photo of Fishermen on Stilts in Sri Lanka.

A photo of Fishermen on Stilts in Sri Lanka.
A photo of Fishermen on Stilts in Sri Lanka.
A photo of Fishermen on Stilts in Sri Lanka.
SKU: SCAN-NOP-00508414

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Fishermen on Stilts - flicking their bamboo rods in and out of the water, these fishermen of Sri Lanka's west coast wait for the bits of the small, sardine-like fish that swim in with the tide. Perched on their poles which protrude about ten feet from the water they have no gear except a rod and woven basket to carry their catch hoashore. The practice started during World War II when food shortages and overcrowded fishing spots prompted some clever men to try fishing on the water. At first they used the wreckage of capsized ships and downed aircraft, then began erecting their stilts in coral reefs. Two generations of fishermen have eked out this physically demanding existence at dawn and dusk along a 30-kilometer stretch of southern shore between the towns of Unawatuna and Weligama.

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