Along Galicia's rugged northwestern coast, known as the Costa da Morte, there exists a group of individuals known as 'percebeiros' or goose-barnacle fishermen. These brave souls face daily risks and perils in their pursuit of percebes. This profession, steeped in tradition, is often passed down through generations within families, spanning centuries.
It can also be quite lucrative, with percebes fetching prices as high as €200 per kilogram ($125 per pound) in Spanish restaurants. For many, becoming a percebeiro is a deliberate career choice. Even during times when well-paying construction jobs were available, not everyone abandoned this profession. However, in the face of an economic crisis and soaring unemployment rates, many returned to the challenging life of a percebeiro.
Most of the photographs featured here were taken in the village of Aguiño, Spain. This village is home to 80 to 100 licensed goose-barnacle fishermen. The rising cost of permits has driven some to engage in illegal hunting of these prized crustaceans at night. This risky endeavor involves navigating treacherous rocks battered by powerful waves and venturing underwater into caves.