It’s no news that the Netherlands is a bike country. It is the main use of transport where every household owns at least a bike (or 10). People go to work, carry their groceries, bike with their children (it doesn’t matter how many), move furniture and basically live with their bike. There is a whole ‘do’s and don’ts‘ list when it comes to cycling as well.

On the other hand, the Netherlands is also a country where water is part of life and there are hundreds of canals all over the country. So with this many bikes and this many canals around them, ever wondered what happens to the bikes once they end up in the water? Well, that’s why there is such thing as ‘bike fishing’! If you are clueless about what we’re talking about, here is all you need to know about this pretty awesome job.

Bike fishing: what the heck is it?

The rough number of bikes in Amsterdam is a whopping 881,000 (you heard that right) and each year Waternet (Amsterdam’s Water Authority), fishes between 12,000 and 15,000 bicycles from the canals. The reason? These bikes were either thrown deliberately, or they end up in the canals due to the weather. And with all the storms and strong winds we’ve had recently, it is not hard to imagine this happening.

So as a result, the profession of ‘bike fisherman’ was born. Their job is to keep the canals clean and safe for the boats. Hey, it is also a full-time job with benefits!

The job consists of going through the canals with a pretty awesome looking boat with its own hydraulic claw, connected to a crane that sits on the front of the boat, looking for well, bikes! Once you pull the bikes from the water, they all eventually end up at a recycling center. Some become beer cans and others become soda cans.

bike fishing
Perfect day to go bike fishing!



If you see any bike fishing in action, stop and watch! It’s not only unique but it’s only in Amsterdam!

Bike fishing: Video!

Long story short, it’s a perfectly quirky job and we have the video to prove it! So here are ‘bike fishermen’ on the job:

Did you know that ‘bike fisherman’ is a job? More importantly, have you ever seen one in action? Share with us in the comments!


(cover pic: youtube)


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