BOOK REVIEW | Coastal Eyre

This is a big, beautifully produced “coffee table book” that is in reality much more than just pretty pictures, although it contains many of those. It is also a truly valuable history of and technical guide to the several very successful and sustainable fisheries of South Australia’s rich and scenic Eyre Peninsula.

To those in other parts of the fishing world, it probably seems unfair that so much bounty is located in one comparatively small geographic area. However, as you learn from reading this book, nature’s bounty has been very carefully enhanced there by the hard work and careful management of its human stewards.

The author, Joseph H. “Bugs” Puglisi, is an important member of one of the leading fishing families of the Eyre Peninsula region. He is also blessed with some remarkable artistic, photographic, and culinary talents that all contribute to the attractiveness of his “masterpiece”.

As a long-time and very successful fisherman himself, Joseph clearly knows what he is writing about and illustrating. That very plainly comes through in his illustrations that show how the various sectors of the industry actually work. He shows the boats, gear, and processing equipment of the wild caught fisheries as well as the technical details of the now equally important aquaculture side of the business.

His vignettes brilliantly describe the history and technical development of the tuna, prawn, abalone, lobster, oyster, mussel, octopus, whiting, crab, kingfish, pilchard, and cockle fisheries and their associated fish farming activities that make the region so rich. As well as picturing the people involved and their business activities, Joseph creates a detailed description of their respective sectors and describes how they fit into the enormously valuable whole of the wider industry.

On top of all that and his brilliantly evocative photographs of the local scenery, Joseph even incorporates some enticing recipes for cooking his favourite local species.

This is a delightful, informative, and very inspiring work.

Author: Joseph H. Puglisi

Available from Puglisi Images, Port Lincoln, South Australia


Neil Baird

Co-founder and former Editor-in-Chief of Baird Maritime and Work Boat World magazine, Neil has travelled the length and breadth of this planet in over 40 years in the business. He knows the global work boat industry better than anyone.