A common sight on rivers during the midsummer around the Chesapeake Bay— pound nets. Used to trap fish, pound nets are one of the oldest gear types used by watermen in the Chesapeake. Made up of a stout poles strung with netting to create a series of funnels, pound nets can catch and hold thousands of fish once they’re constructed. Native Americans along the Bay had their own version of pound nets known as “weirs,” which closely resembled the gear used by modern watermen. Herons, osprey, eagles and other fish-loving birds of prey are often thickly settled on the pound nets, poles and trees nearby— anything that will get them closer to the fish that seethe within.
Image by author.