These iconic stilt fishermen are unique to Sri Lanka. They sit patiently on a cross bar called petta tied to a vertical pole and driven into the sand a few meters offshore. From this high position, the fisherman casts his line and waits until a fish comes along to be caught. Although the technique looks ancient, stilt fishing is only a recent tradition which has started during World War II when food shortages and overcrowded fishing spots prompted the first shore anglers between Unawatuna and Weligama to try fishing on the water. At first they started fishing from the wrecks of capsised ships and downed aircrafts, later they began erecting wooden stilts in the coastal reefs.