Inclement weather forced fishermen back to shore on Thursday after they resumed fishing operations following the 45-day ban in force during the breeding season.
Buffeted by gale-force winds, around 275 mechanised boats returned to shore with meagre hauls after setting out off the coast of Ervadi in the north and Manappad in the south.
The catch averaged Rs. 30,000 which was not enough to cover the overheads of the trip, they pointed out.
“We left the fishing harbour by 5 a.m. and ventured towards Ervadi, where the wind velocity on the sea was very high. Hence, we had to return to the shore early after two rounds of fishing instead of the usual five to six rounds,” said S. Bhaskar, a mechanised boat driver from Cruzpuram in Tuticorin.
A. Manuel, who took his boat towards Manappad, encountered a similar problem and had to return to the harbour after four rounds of fishing.
“We got only Rs. 25,000-worth fish, which is not even enough to meet a day’s fuel expenses,” he said.
Fishermen expect an early onset of the prawn season
If the winds continue to lash the high seas.