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A mechanical issue with his boat’s motor prevented Pierre Autin from taking us on a tour of the marshland in Clovelly Farms where his family has held trapping and hunting leases for longer than Pierre has been alive. But he was able to motor to the mouth of Clovelly Canal, where it meets (not-so) Little Lake, and where a friend’s raised camp provided spectacular views to the surrounding waters, marshes, and skies.
Pierre described the differences between trawling and skimming for shrimp as a boat with skimmers passed through the canal below; he determined that it had been a good day for crabbing, based upon the number of crates two Carolina skiffs were hauling back to shore; and he outlined the varying functions of a mud boat and a skiff.
A lifelong hunter, trapper, and fisherman himself, Pierre speaks on such topics with the ease of a man who owned his own boat by the time he reached adolescence, and who was given free rein of the canals and bayous that are his region’s highways and byways before he could drive a car. That’s because he did, and he was. Lucky man.