WHALSAY now boasts the biggest fishing boat in Scotland with the return of the pelagic trawler Research (LK 62) from Norway where she underwent a refit.
Marine engineers at the Batbygg yard in Raudeberg added an extra 7.8 metre section that extends the vessel to a total length of 78.5 metres, the extra capacity allowing her to carry an extra 500 tonnes of fish.
A large area forward of the wheelhouse has also been decked in, making conditions safer for the men and allowing the vessel to fish more in the winter months.
Skipper Willie Williamson said: “We need the extra capacity for making longer trips, like we did last year to the west of Ireland.
“She should also be a better sea boat for operating in the winter.
“We had fine weather and a smooth run over from Norway so we didn’t really get a chance to gauge that. One thing’s for sure – we will soon!”
Williamson said he believed the substantial increase in mackerel quotas this year following the political deal with Iceland would depress prices.
The Research was due to head south later in the week to fish for herring off Orkney.
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