New monitoring vessel for Danish waters

Friday 08 Jan 16
by Line Reeh


Friedrich Wilhelm Köster
Director of institute, Professor
DTU Aqua
+45 35 88 30 00

The first steps was taken to upgrade DTU Aqua's monitoring fleet when Havfisken left the shipyard in Hvide Sande on Tuesday. The vessel will collect data about fish populations and the marine environment and can also be used for educational expeditions.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016, DTU Aqua's new monitoring vessel was put to work in the Danish waters. The vessel was named at Vestværftet in Hvide Sande. The new vessel, Havfisken, replaces the current boat of the same name.

Weighing in at 105 tonnes, the 17-metre steel vessel will, among other things, monitor the development of key fish and shellfish populations in the Danish waters.

Fritz Köster, Head of Department of DTU Aqua, says:

“Havfisken is equipped and adapted specifically to DTU Aqua’s tasks and needs, and I’m very pleased with our new vessel which significantly improves our ability to collect data and carry out research and educational expeditions.

The new ship replaces a wooden vessel built in the early 1960s and will, among other things, offer new opportunities in the field of education, assesses Marie Storr-Paulsen, Head of Section for Monitoring and Data, DTU Aqua. She will be one of the users of the ship.

“The new vessel gives us the capacity to have guests on board, so that we, for example, can make educational expeditions, both for our own students and in cooperation with industry,” says Marie Storr-Paulsen, DTU Aqua.

Greater range and special equipment
Havfisken has room for a double crew so that the ship can operate 24/7, and it also has a greater range for expeditions, enabling us in future to can cover areas in Skagerrak and the Baltic Sea, where we previously had to charter other vessels for a given task.

The vessel is equipped for trawling with two trawls and also has modern equipment for different types of marine research and environmental monitoring, says fishing technologist and skipper Aage Thaarup, who will be on board when the new vessel leaves Hvide Sande and heads toward Hirtshals after the naming ceremony on Tuesday:

“The ship is specially equipped for marine research, with, among other things, an ‘A-frame’ aft so we can handle sensitive equipment such as video and acoustic equipment which does not tolerate being bumped against the ship’s side, when handled.”

100 expeditions days already in the calendar
100 days of monitoring expeditions have already been booked in Havfisken’s sailing schedule for 2016, primarily in Kattegat, Skagerrak, and the Baltic Sea. One of Havfisken’s first tasks will be to monitor the population of Norway lobster in Kattegat and Skagerrak. The spring expeditions also include studies of state of fish populations Kattegat and Skagerrak with focus on cod, plaice, sole, whiting, dab, turbot, brill, flounder, and witch.

In addition, there are plans for an additional 65 research expeditions—among other things within seabed mapping and fisheries technology.

Data from the monitoring expeditions are included in the databases of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES), and the information is used for giving advice on determinations of fishing quotas.

Havfisken will supplement DTU’s large, ocean-going marine research vessel, Dana, which carries out tasks in Danish waters.

Facts about Havfisken

• A 17-metre long and 105-ton heavy steel fishing vessel.

• Extensive accommodation and working deck for processing biological samples instead of the large cargo holds of standard fishing vessels.

• Equipped for towing two trawls, but can also be used for other tasks.

• Has a large A-frame aft and crane as well as different winches for handling sensitive scientific equipment.

• Must have a two-man crew, but there is room for a total of six to eight people, as the ship has four two-man cabins. On shorter trips, the vessel may accommodate up to 12 passengers.

• Its hull was built in Riga in Latvia, after which it was equipped at Vestværftet in Hvide Sande.

• Havfisken’s home port will be Strandby in North Jutland.