Fishermen who completed their first voyage are reluctant to go for another fishing venture due to poor returns.
Though most of the mechanised boats have returned to the fishing harbour, half of them did not opt to undertake second voyage. “This is precisely because the amount we are getting by selling our catch is not enough to meet the expenses incurred by us,” says Ch. Satyanarayana Murthy, president, Dolphin Boat Operators' Welfare Association.
There are about 600 boats being operated from the fishing harbour here. “We have spent nearly Rs.1.1 lakh on buying fuel for the first voyage whereas on an average the boat owners returned with shrimp weighing 250 kilos,” he told The Hindu on Tuesday. Premium quality shrimp fetches around Rs.250 to Rs.300 per kg. A scene at fishing habour also gives the look of ban period as 400 boats were lying idle. The annual conservation period came to an end on June 1. The layoff period lasted 47 days.
AP Mechanised Boat Operators' Welfare Association president P.Ch. Appa Rao says failure in getting good amount of rainfall has led to poor catch. Fish numbers multiply at the estuaries and confluence of rivers and the sea such as Rushikulya near Gopalpur in Orissa when there is good rainfall. Fishermen hope that only a good monsoon could pep up their spirit.
Fishermen by and large are of the opinion that never in the past, they could get such a disappointing catch after their first voyage. First voyage used to be quite encouraging in the past. However, after heavy investments on refurbishing their boats, this time the returns fell short of their expectations.