Bricoles are commonly known as a type of navigational aid or a makeshift buoy used by sailors and fishermen in the past. These were typically constructed by attaching various items such as pieces of wood, empty barrels, or any other floating material to create a floating marker. Bricoles were often utilized to mark the locations of submerged rocks, shallow areas, or dangerous waters to prevent ships from running aground or encountering any navigational hazards.
The construction of bricoles was considered an essential skill for sailors and fishermen as it helped them navigate through treacherous waters safely. This technique allowed them to mark specific spots that posed a threat to their vessels, ensuring that they could avoid these hazards during their journeys. Bricoles were particularly useful in areas where fixed navigation marks were not present or were unreliable due to shifting sandbars or changing tides.
Although modern navigation technology has largely replaced the need for bricoles, they still have some applications today. In certain parts of the world, especially in developing countries or remote coastal areas, bricoles may still be used as a cost-effective means of marking navigational hazards. Additionally, bricoles have become popular decorative items, with their unique and rustic appearance adding a touch of maritime charm to homes, gardens, or seaside resorts.