VietNamNet Bridge - Hundreds of poor women soak their bodies in brackish water all day long to catch clams.
VietNamNet Bridge - Hundreds of poor women soak their bodies in brackish water all day long to catch clams in Tam Giang Lagoon.
Tam Giang Lagoon is about 52km2, stretching over 24km from the O Lau river mouth to the mouth of Huong River, located in the three districts of Phong Dien, Quang Dien, and Huong Tra of Thua Thien - Hue, a province in central Vietnam. The depth of the lagoon is from 2-4m and up to 7m at some places. Every year thousands of tons of fish, shrimp and clams are caught here.
This is a hard and lonely job of women in Tam Giang Lagoon.
Most of the clam catchers are poor and weak women who can only work in the shallow waters of the Tam Giang Lagoon.
To combat the cold by soaking in water for several hours, they wear more clothes or drink fish sauce.
Soon after going ashore, many women also smoke cigarettes to sweep away the chills.
Ms. Luong Thi Teo, 72, said she has been doing this job since childhood.
Some well-off people equip themselves with a small boat to catch clams in the deep waters.
The price for clams is very cheap during the harvest season – only VND3,000/kg.
This boat will carry clams to Hue city.
The harvest season is in the 3rd and 4th months of the lunar calendar.
This woman caught about 10kg of clams in the morning, earning VND30,000 ($1.5).
Ms. Teo said she is weak now so she only catches clams in the morning.
To earn extra income, this woman raises several dogs and ducks.
Many girls have followed their mothers to catch clams in the Tam Giang Lagoon since childhood. This job is hard but it helps many poor people earn a stable income.