Name: Rowan Lamason – Little Tuna Owner and Skipper

Boat: FV Rummage and FV Total

How long have you been a fisherman for?
I started fishing as soon as I finished high school in 2002, within 10 days from graduation I was out longlining for tuna. From there a spent a few years on deck learning the ropes and then getting my skippers tickets and taking the helm of my first boat in 2006.

How did you become a fisherman?
As kids to a tuna fisherman, fishing was always in our blood. I have always loved to fish, as a kid I would spend the school holidays fishing off the wharf with my friends and siblings at the “new pig pens” while dad was working on the boats. I started going to sea with dad at about the age of seven. Usually seasick for the first few days of the trip then finding my sea legs. Once I was in my early teens I would sit up most of the day while the crew rested trying to catch mahi mahi. When I was fifteen, I caught five mahi mahi and one shark for the trip while the crew slept. At the end of the trip I got paid $70 and I was hooked. I got paid for doing what I loved what else could I ask for.

What’s the best thing about fishing?
I love everything about commercial fishing. Growing up and learning the trade in such an isolated environment, being 350 nautical miles offshore can test you in so many ways mentally, physically and financially but I am forever grateful for the experiences. I also enjoyed learning the environment we worked in. There is so much life beneath the surface and I got to discover and monitor it over the years trying to understand what the ecosystem is doing.

What’s your favourite fish and why?
My favourite fish to eat has always been mahi mahi however as a fisherman I love to catch Bigeye tuna they feed at night when the moon is high in the night sky. There is no greater feeling than landing a 60kg plus fish and it can lift the moral of the whole crew on any trip.

What do you do in your free time?
Spend time with the family and friends. When time is available, I like to go spearfishing on the reef.

What do you love about Cairns?
Cairns is the gateway to the coral sea, rivers and Cape York. It has the best fishing in Australia weather you’re up a river chasing barramundi, spearing coral trout around the reefs or 200km offshore catching tuna. We are so lucky to live in a place like Cairns.

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