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PAGE7MAZINAIGANISHDECOYSeyawagAnishinaabewingtheAnishinaabewayAkwawaaisawordAnishinaabepeopleknowalltoowell.Fishingthroughtheicewithaspearistheroughtranslation.Anishinaabepeoplehavepracticedthistraditionalmethodofsubsistenceforcenturiesonriverslakesandstreams.Whentheicewouldprohibitnettingandspearingholeswouldbechiseledthroughtheiceandadifferentformoffishingwouldoccur.Nowadaysthepracticeisstilldonehoweveritisexercisedinamoremodernfashion.Theworkthatgoesalongwiththespearingisstillchallengingandattimesdangerous.Thedaystartswiththeofferingofasemaatobacco.Thetobaccoitselfisaformofprayerandanextensionofgratitudefortheabilitytoattempttheharvestandforthespiritsofthegiigooyagthatmaygivethemselvesuptofeedthepeople.Oncethisprotocolistakencareoftheareaisscopedout.Manypeoplehavetheirspecialspotsoratleastsomeformoforalknowledgepertainingtolocallakesandrivers.Oncethespotispickedanicechiselhammersthroughonesometimestwofeetofice.Theholeneedstobebigenoughtopullalargefishthroughandtocreatevisibilityonallsides.Chiselingaholethroughiceisnoeasytaskanditcantaketime.Oncetheholeischiseledtoanacceptablediametertheslushandicepiecesneedtobescoopedoutofthehole.Ablacktarpwithacutoutisplacedoverthespearinghole.Thisistohelpwithvisibilityatthebottomofthelakeandallowsthefishermantolayonthegroundevenclosertothebottom.Akwawewigamigfishhouseforspearingisplacedoverthehole.Manypeopletothisdaystillrigupatipi-likesystemmadeofsmallpoleswithatarporbalsamboughscoveringthestructure.Thisallowsforthecancellationoflightwithinthesheltertocreatevisibilityundertheice.Thestructureallowsfortheretentionofheatwhichcanbecriticalwhentemperaturessoarbelowzerodegrees.Okeyawfishdecoyisthensentdowntheholeandplungestotheappropriatedepth.Anexperiencedspearermovesthejigstickinapatternthatmakesthedecoyswiminacircle.Differentmovementsofthejiggingstickcorrespondtodifferentmovementsofthedecoyfish.Sometimesthefishdecoyisswimminginup-and-downpatternswhileothertimesitdartsaroundinaneye-appealinginjuredmanner.Eventuallyifitsmeanttobeafishusuallymaashkinoozhemuskyorginoozhenorthernpikeswimsthroughinterestedinthefishdecoy.Sometimesthefishwillevenattackthedecoy.Peripheralvisionisverylimitedwithasmalliceholehoweveranexperiencedfishermanwillseethefishmovinginslowly.Thespearerwillpositionhimselforherselfandmakesurethespearisattachedtotheshelterorthemselves.Inafastmotiontheanitspearaheavyone-piecebarofmetalisdroppeddowntheholeandinaninstantafishispulledup.Everythinghappenssofast.Everytribalmemberthathasspearedthroughtheiceknowsthatapersoncouldgoalldayinthefreezingcoldwithoutseeingonefish.EverytimeisdifferentbuttheAnishinaabegcontinuetobravethecoldweatherandharshwinterstofeedtheirfamiliesandtorevitalizetheseculturalpractices.Atarpislayedovertheiceholeandthenashelterisplacedontopofthetarptominimizelightpenetrationforvisiblewaterconditions.Afterasemaatobaccoisofferedaholeischiseledthroughtheice.MilaniaLabargejigsadecoyupanddownsidetosideinhopesofluringinsomegiigooyag.TotheleftAcompletedokeyawreadytobesubmerged.TheartofharvestingMichaelLabargestandsuponBigArborVitaelakeexcitedandreadytosh.EssentialOjibwemowinakwawewigamigfishhouseforspearingokeyawfishdecoy