Wednesday, February 13, 2013


Frank Wells

Our ancestors were some of the most skilled fishermen ever found by Western explorers.  The variety of fishing techniques and equipment, and the facility with which fish were successfully caught, impressed these foreigners.

The haguet, or fish hook, came in different shapes.  The V shaped and the L shaped hooks were very common, especially the latter, and are almost always found in ancient Chamorro archaeological sites.  These hooks were made with a type of oyster shell.  They would be attached to a string.  Bait, such as coconut meat or fish meat, would be attached to the hook.  A fish would have to swallow the bait and hook with its entire mouth in order for the hook to lodge in the interior of the fish's mouth or throat.  Then the fisherman could pull up the string with fish in tow.

Frank Wells

Fish could be eaten raw, and others were roasted on an open fire.  Since the Marianas did not have land mammals yet, fish was an important source of protein for our ancestors.

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