Caught in a Drum Net

March 4, 2009 by  
Filed under Bush Poetry, Caught in a Drum Net


A similar fishy tale to this has been knocking around the bush in one form or another for years. This is a true story that is about Ron getting caught by some fishing inspectors while he was checking a fish trap that he had found several years ago. Fish traps, or “Drum Nets”, are of course highly illegal. As it turned out the trap he was inspecting when inspected by the inspectors was actually the inspector’s trap. They were apparently doing a survey of fish numbers. That was their story any way. Here’s Rons.

Bush poetry by Ronnie Wilson

A fish inspector’s job is to enforce our laws,
From poachers who driven by greed.
Use methods unfair in the name of their cause,
And then take more fish than they need.

It’s a well known fact that bag limits retract,
From those who tend to be illegal.
And the nature of tackle is sure and exact,
On what is and what is not legal.

And apart from a gill-net the worst to conspire,
Is a round trap with the nickname of “drum net”.
With a funnel at one end, made of chicken mesh wire,
It just rolls into the river when set.

But still because of my respect for the law,
I’d never risked using one myself, “true”.
The cost if convicted means losing it all,
Your boat, and your four-wheel drive, too.

One morn I went early to a secret location,
Where I new I’d catch a good feed.
I had permission to fish on the grazing station,
And I never catch more than I need.

But there on the bank not ten feet from me,
Was a rope disappearing into the river.
I thought seeing this end is tied to a tree,
The other must be tied to a… “fish giver”.

An easy free feed seemed too good to pass,
So I hauled up the trap for inspection.
And I emptied the catch on the river bank grass,
Completely unaware of detection.

Then I jumped in the air when a voice on my right,
Said, “looks like a pretty good feed”.
And my heart went on strike from effects of the fright,
And my bowels soon followed its lead.

The local fish inspector right there, in uniform stood,
Surveying his latest investigation.
And I looked up the bank at my Landcruiser’s hood,
And new it was marked for confiscation.

I new in an instant as my life flashed me by,
He had already decided my guilt.
And I had to think quick of a suitable lie,
Or suffer the law at full hilt.

I drew a sharp breath and very loudly I said,
“And who the bloody hell are you”.
And I stood holding ground, demanding instead,
Where he probably thought I’d shoot through.

Then with a swing from my aggressive manner, 
I said, “Oh I’m dreadfully sorry old chap”.
What luck that it’s you the local fish inspector,
I thought you must be the bloke who owns this trap.

© Ron Wilson