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As sporting fishermen head north and west this August, sorting reels, rods and flies, I shall be fixing ropes and buoys and savouring last year’s bucket of rotten coley. For me, the pastime of plucking wild animals from the water is not done by flogging the surface of rivers and lakes, but by plumbing the kelp forest for the greatest monarch of the deep: the lobster.

My family was taught to fish lobsters during summers in the Hebrides by the island postmaster, Donald Kennedy. After closing the post office, he would set off each calm evening in a wooden boat…

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