Setting the trawl

Provincetown trawler

Russell Perry mans the winch as the rig, called an otter trawl, plays out from the Reneva, a 56-foot wooden dragger out of Provincetown skippered by Raymond Duarte. Hanging aft and about to be dropped is one of two 700-pound “otter doors.” Made of wood and bound in rusty metal, the doors act as vanes that fly outward on the forward current to hold the mouth of the net open as it is pulled along the sea floor. On this August day in 1980, Reneva works Stellwagen Bank off the tip of Cape Cod.