Lobster boat and dinghy at Scarinish pier
Photograph of a lobster boat and dinghy at Scarinish pier in July 2000.
Tiree may be known as Tìr an Eòrna, the land of barley, but the abundance of shellfish on its shores must have been one of the attractions that brought the first men to the island 7,000 years ago. In the 19th century, dried ling and cod were a major export from the island.
Today the lobster and crab fishery is Tiree’s second biggest earner with an estimated annual catch worth £750,000. By comparison, in 2004 crofting was estimated to be worth £730,000 to the island with a further £680,000 coming in subsidy.
Currently five boats fish out of Tiree for velvet crabs (deiseagan) and brown crabs (crùban or partan) which sell for 50-70 pence a kilo. ‘Deiseagan’ are particularly prized in Spain where they are cut in half and the body contents picked out whole with a spoon.
Colour photograph of Scarinish harbour in July 2000.
Lobster boat and dinghy at Scarinish pier in July 2000.