Barbuda is well known for its abundant lobster, conchs and other seafood that are sustainably caught by low impact fishing, using traditional methods and local skills over many generations. Larger fish such as kingfish, dolphin or mahi mahi, tuna, and barracuda are caught and sold to the hotels in the season and Barbudans regularly fish for these. Most people can help arrange a fishing trip and the hotels have a fishing boat for guests.
Large barrracuda can be seen close to shore in the waters around the island and are eaten widely in Barbuda, on the whole these larger fish do not carry the Ciguatera poison which prevents their consumption in other parts of the Caribbean.
There are competitive sports fishing tournaments at various times in the village. There is good bone-fishing, particularly because of the protected Lagoon – a Ramsar site and one of the largest in the Eastern Caribbean – which acts as a nursery for many of our species.
Our fishers ship lobster and conch to other islands on a weekly basis and our fisheries are subject to strict conservation guidelines:
All fishing in Barbuda waters must be done on a licensed Barbudan boat. Please be aware of our particular local laws so please read here for more information regarding our conservation laws – such as the use of spear guns and closed seasons.
Very big shark are still caught and eaten here and some Barbudans still make medicinal shark oil to sell in Antigua. The Fisheries complex on the edge of Codrington lagoon has facilitated local fishers potential to earn more from this industry, storing equipment and keeping their catch on ice so that in future it can be exported in larger quantities throughout the Caribbean, while improving the chances of maintaining this delicate balance for years to come.