If the crew hoped for a successful season, the captain's knowledge of the different pearl banks was as important as the dangerous work of the divers.
The pearl banks were generally some distance from the coast lying at depths of 8 to 20 fathoms
(46 to 120 feet).
An experienced captain attempted to avoid areas visited in the previous season to prevent over-fishing.
The boats were moored and, when the harvest of oysters diminished, the captain would choose a new location.
Use of Compass
Navigation was limited to the stars, a simple compass and the captain's knowledge and experience of the pearl banks.