Dawei is the capital city of Tanintharyi Division in the costal region of southern Myanma Maungmakan is a seaside village ten miles from Dawei. Most of the villagers carry out fishing at sea as a living tradition.
Boats are vital requirements for fishing at the sea. Various sizes of fishing boats are used in this work but Boatmahlay is the most useful in manageable fishing of a family. It is a small wooden boat built without any iron or steel. The smallest Boatmahlay is 18 feet long, which is used for fishing within nautical 10 miles from the coast.
The construction of Boatmahlay is wonderful. It is built with Bantbwae wood planks attached with small wooden sticks into the holes on either sides of the boat. Two planks used for building the boat are joined together by keeping small wooden sticks into the holes on the sides of the planks.
Yaynyantha wood is kept between the two planks to prevent water seepage into the boat. Then the ropes are tied around the planks to keep them tight together. All the Botema boats are built in this way though there may be differences in size. The fishermen of Maungmakan village load their boats with food supplies and other needs for one or two days fishing at the sea.
The fishermen go out to the open sea by boats depending on the weather. They would joyfully return to their village after sufficient amount of catch at the sea. Their housewives would put the fish on sale at the market. There are various kinds of fish Kettabaung (sharks), Ngakunshut (mackerel), Ngaleikkyauk and at Maungmakan fish market in the morning.
Maungmakan Beach is thus alive with the fisherman and their fishing boats returning after a night's fishing at the sea and carrying out preparations to go out to the open sea again in the evening. Thus the fishermen of Maungmakan are familiar with the majestic sea while happily carrying out fishing skilfully as their living by tradition.
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