Spear Fishermen

The one that didn’t get away: Incredible athleticism of spear fishermen caught in mid-flight

  • Local fishermen leap into the water with spears to catch fish on the Loyalty Islands Province in New Caledonia
  • The sea clan lives almost entirely on fish and other sea creatures

By Alex Ward

PUBLISHED: 12:04 GMT, 20 November 2012 | UPDATED: 12:29 GMT, 20 November 2012

With perfect precision, this spear fisherman leaps into the air in a spectacular display of a bizarre spear hunting technique.

The fisherman shows off his incredible skill on the Loyalty Islands Province in New Caledonia where the sea clan live almost entirely on fish and other sea creatures.

However, despite the odd way of catching his food, fisherman Albert is just showing a normal way of life on the islands in the south west Pacific Ocean.


Fly fishing: Spear fisherman Albert uses perfect precision to catch fish in this idyllic location on an island in New Caledonia


Photographer Stephane Ducandas, 41, who also lives on the islands, said be believes the fishing technique is unique.

He said: ‘I have never seen this type of fishing anywhere else. In New Caledonia, some prawn fisherman use Assegai (a spear or pole-type weapon).

‘But jumping like this with that incredible precision was absolutely amazing and typical of Loyalty Island.’


Mr Ducandas used a camera with special underwater equipment to capture the incredible moments.

He said: ‘This is the kind of subject that most interests me photographically. It’s all about the moment – one special light, one special relationship between one person and myself.

‘I’m most interested in photographing human stories and lives. When I meet with someone, I share his world, his job, his family and his life before I get out the camera.’


Catch of the day: Albert shows off his spear and what he can catch on the island where people live almost entirely on fish and other sea creatures



Unique technique: Local fisherman jump with precision in a way not seen anywhere else says photographer Stephane Ducandas

A hunter’s patience: Albert looks down into the water, waiting for the perfect moment to pounce on his prey




Proud catch: A local shows off a caught fish as another throws out a fishing net in the Loyalty Islands Province



Nature calling: A local using a sea shell in the shallows on the island in the south west of the Pacific Ocean



A moment in paradise: A local boy relaxes in the sun by the crystal clear waters where fisherman catch food for their sea clan



Seaside stroll: A local woman walks along the amazing coastline