Spring is blossoming at Tubby Medeiros’s home in Dodger’s Hole in Edgartown. But instead of budding flowers, there is a mix of brightly-colored lobster pot buoys.
Mr. Medeiros is a lobsterman and he is moving full speed ahead to get ready for the upcoming fishing season. New white lobster pot buoys, freshly painted with orange markings, hang on lines in his backyard like laundry on a clothes line.
Last Monday morning, from inside his open door garage, Mr. Medeiros, 49, assembled his lobster pots and fish pots. This is a quiet time, well before the fishing season starts in April, and he shares it with his occasional fishing partner, Sadie, a six-year-old boxer.
Most Island lobstermen purchase their pots rather than build them, Mr. Medeiros said. Lobster pots these days are made of plastic coated steel mesh, not the locally harvested hard oak of years ago.
“I like making my own pots,” he said. “I know the work that goes into them. You know what you are getting, when it comes to quality.”
For most of the fall and into the winter, Mr. Medeiros was out bay scalloping, taking advantage of what he described as a “good season.” But beginning in January he shifted his attention to thinking about summer.
Mr. Medeiros said he will make hundreds of different fishing pots before the fishing season begins to stay ahead of the ones he will lose. In summer there is no time for building them. Mr. Medeiros said he is out on the water working a minimum of 12 hour days.
There are many different kinds of fishing pots including lobster pots, conch pots, black seabass pots and green crab pots, and he will use most of them. His 13-year-old son Cory will fish the green crab pots.
Mr. Medeiros said he will use the crabs his son catches as bait. Mr. Medeiros fishes in a 36-foot lobsterboat called Billie H. out of Lake Tashmoo.
“Tashmoo is God’s country,” he said. He fishes his pots in Vineyard Sound and Nantucket Sound.
“I am looking forward to getting back on the water. I am ready to get out of the pond, onto the real water.”