Long hours, hard work, at the whim of Maritime weather and sometimes, facing real danger in the rough waters of the Atlantic, this sums up how these men and women earn their living from the sea.
We thought you'd like to meet some of these extraordinary people who catch your fish!
I first met Wreyford on a cold, windy December evening in 1988 when I was employed by a local lobster and fish processor. We would unload lobsters from the various vessels that we dealt with each evening, then provide them with their bait and fuel for the next day. Usually, I worked at another wharf, but on this particular night, I was assisting the crew at the wharf where Wreyford fished from.
Most of the fleet had returned to port, offloaded, picked up bait and fuel, tied up and gone home by 7:00 pm. It was now past 8:00 pm, and I remember asking my co-worker what are we waiting for. His response was, “The smallest boat in the fleet. He goes the furthest and stays the longest, Wreyford Goodwin in the Little Brat."
Two hours later, we met for the first time, and I have had the pleasure of knowing him ever since.
Wreyford fishes from the port of Newellton, located on Cape Sable Island in south western Nova Scotia. Wreyford began his fishing career like most, fishing as a deckhand with others until he gained enough experience to go out on his own.
He purchased his first vessel, which he described as “an old wooden boat that was always leaking” in 1982 and was off on his own, fishing ground fish in the summer and lobster in the winter.That leaky wooden boat was replaced shortly thereafter with "Little Brat", the first of the “Brat” vessels. This vessel was used to longline cod and haddock as well as harpoon swordfish in the summer and fish lobster in the winter. “Little Brat” was eventually replaced with “Big Brat” and again eventually with his current vessel, “Spoiled Brat” which Wreyford uses to longline swordfish and tuna from June until October and to fish lobster from November until May each year.