Geelong Star

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KG- 14 Næraberg IMO 8209171 Klaksvik.jpg
Geelong Star as Naeraberg at IJmuiden in 2010
  • Dirk-Dirk KW 172 (1983–2009)
  • Naeraberg (2009–2015)
  • DirkDirk KW 172 (2015)
  • Geelong Star (2015–2016)
  • Dirk-Dirk KW 172 (2016–)
Port of registry:
Builder: Scheepswerf- en Reparatiebedrijf "Harlingen" BV, Harlingen, Netherlands
Yard number: 64
Launched: October 1983
Completed: 10 December 1983
Identification:IMO number8209171
Status: In service
Notes: [1][2]
General characteristics
Class and type: Super-trawler
Tonnage: 3,181 GT, 2,756 DWT
Length: 95.2 m (312 ft)
Beam: 14.8 m (49 ft)
Draught: 5.1 m (17 ft)
Depth: 8.6 m (28 ft)
Installed power: 4,351 bhp (3,245 kW)
Propulsion: 6-cylinder diesel engine by MaK, single propeller
Speed: 14 kn (26 km/h; 16 mph)

Geelong Star was a former name of the 3,181 GT super-trawler and factory ship Dirk-Dirk, built in 1983 at Harlingen, Netherlands for the Dutch fishing company Parlevliet & van der Plas of Katwijk. In 2015–2016 Hobart Star was involved in political controversy and faced protests from those opposed to the use of super-trawlers in Australian fisheries.

Design and construction[edit]

The vessel was ordered in 1980 from the Dutch shipyard Scheepswerf- en Reparatiebedrijf "Harlingen" BV at Harlingen as yard number 64 with IMO number 8209171, launched in October 1983 and entered service in December that year.[1] She has an overall length of 95.18 metres (312 ft 3 in), beam of 14.81 metres (48 ft 7 in), and loaded draught of 5.08 metres (16 ft 8 in), and a gross tonnage (GT) of 3,019 (modified to 3,181 GT in 2000).[1][2] The trawler has two insulated fish holds totalling 4,300 cubic metres (150,000 cu ft) and a deadweight tonnage of 2,756 tons.[1] She is powered by a 6-cylinder 3,200-kilowatt (4,300 bhp) MaK 6M551AK diesel engine geared to a controllable-pitch propeller and giving the trawler a service speed of 14.0 knots (25.9 km/h; 16.1 mph).[1]

Commercial service[edit]

The trawler, under a several names, has remained in service with her initial owners, the Katwijk-based Parlevliet & van der Plas Haringhandel BV (PvdP), both directly or with a number of affiliated companies.[1] She entered service as Dirk-Dirk under the Netherlands flag with call-sign PDQL and fishing port registration number KW 174.[2] At the end of August 1990 she was re-registered in the port of Bremerhaven, Germany without change of name, given the port number BX 784 and call-sign DMBB and then, in 1993, transferred to PvdP's local subsidiary Doggerbank Seefischerei GmbH, with call-sign changed to DENR.[1][2] In 1995 she was transferred within Germany to Ostbank Hochseefischerei GmbH & Co, Sassnitz and registered at Rostock with port number ROS 784.[1][2]

In October 2009 Dirk-Dirk was renamed Naeraberg[a] and transferred to the Faroese flag and the ownership of P/f Naeraberg, a PvdP company operating in association with established local company P/f JFK, Klaksvik. She was registered at Klaksvik, with number KG 14 and call-sign XPXK.[1][2][3] Naeraberg remained with the Faroese company until 2015, apart from a few months between October 2011 and February 2012 when she was registered at Klaipeda, with port number KL 453 and call-sign LYTM and operated by PvdP's Lithuanian subsidiary, JSC Atlantic High Sea Fishing Co, Vilnius.[1][2] This is the same company that has owned the larger super-trawler Margiris since 2005.[1][4] Naeraberg was briefly returned to parent company PvdP in 2015 (reverting briefly to Dirk-Dirk), before being renamed Geelong Star under the Australian flag and ownership of Seafish Tasmania Pelagic Pty of Triabunna, Tasmania, which had previously owned Margiris as Abel Tasman.[1] Geelong Star was registered at Geelong with call-sign VHJK, but bearing the Rostock fishery number ROS 7.[1][5]

Following her withdrawal from the Australian venture by PvdB, Geelong Star again reverted to her original name Dirk-Dirk, to Netherlands flag and to Katwijk registry, though this time with port number KW 172 and call-sign PBBZ. She remains in active fishing service as at March 2018.[1][2]

Australian operations[edit]

The ship was operated in Australia from 2015 until 2016 by Seafish Tasmania as fishing vessel Geelong Star and was permitted to catch 16,500 tons per year, later increased to 18,623 tons,[6] of red bait, jack mackerel and sardines, using Corio Quay in Geelong as its home port during its time in Australia.[7]

Trawling is banned in Tasmanian waters, with the Premier of Tasmania Will Hodgman saying,

""It's a matter that's determined by the Commonwealth Government, our position in Tasmania is very clear – trawling is in fact banned, we've banned trawling in Tasmanian waters...We also support the continuing ban on super trawlers which has been previously debated. I've communicated that to the Federal Government as well, but matters that come within their control and their responsibility are determined by them – but our position is very clear on this.[8]

The vessel was permitted to take its quota of fish in a designated zone reaching from Queensland, around the south-east coast of Australia, to Western Australia.[9]

Opposition to the operator of the trawler, Seafish Tasmania was interlinked with Tasmanian politics.[10][11]

Controversy around the ship reached Australian government level with Senate motions over the ship.[12][13]

The vessel operated in Australia waters without its Automatic Identification System enabled to avoid tracking of the ship by activists.[14]

On October 31, 2016, the ship left Australian waters and returned to the Netherlands,[15][16] assuming her former name of Dirk Diederik KW 172.[17]


Environmental groups were opposed to the style of the trawler and its capacities.[18][19]

During April 2015, recreational fishers in approximately 50 boats protested on Hobart's Derwent River against the operation of the trawler in Australian waters.[20]

During May 2015, almost 400 residents of Geelong protested at the Geelong Waterfront requesting the trawler be banned from operating in Australian waters.[21]

The public concern over Super Trawlers in general led to the forming of a political party specifically opposed to operations in Australian waters, the Australian Recreational Fishers Party.[22]

Senate inquiry[edit]

The Australian Senate launched an inquiry into super trawlers, chaired by Senator Peter Whish-Wilson.[23]

Environmental impact[edit]

While fishing Australian waters the ship was reported to have netted a whale shark,[24] and causing the deaths of fur seals, albatross and dolphins, facing several bans from fishing zones.[25]

During May 2015, Federal Member for Corangamite Sarah Henderson wrote to Senator Richard Colbeck urging him to ban the trawler from operating in Australian waters.[26]

During June 2016, operators of the vessel in Australia, Seafish Tasmania objected to the release of video footage of a dolphin being captured in the nets of Geelong Star, claiming the footage would cause damage to their business reputation and incite environmental activists to protest at the company's operations.[27]

The reduction of impact on small pelagic fisheries was negotiated,[28] but ultimately failed.[29][30]

In November 2016, the Australian Fisheries Management Authority announced it was looking into video streaming technology aboard trawlers to improve their response to the welfare of endangered marine wildlife.[31]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Parlevliet & van der Plas and P/f JFK have subsequently owned another super-trawler Naeraberg of similar design, built as Dirk-Diederik in 1990 (IMO 8918318).[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o "Dirk Dirk". Sea-web (subscription required). IHS Markit. Retrieved 6 March 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "Dirk-Dirk". EU Fleet Register. European Commission, Fisheries & Maritime Affairs. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  3. ^ "P/f JFK". Fish Info & Services Co Ltd. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  4. ^ "Margiris". EU fleet register. European Commission, Fisheries & Maritime Affairs. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  5. ^ "P&P blij met Australische vergunning". Visserijnieuws (in Dutch). Urk, Netherlands. 20 February 2015. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  6. ^ "Geelong Star fishing trawler given extra fishing area of one million square kilometres". Geelong Advertiser. 24 April 2016. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  7. ^ "Controversial trawler Geelong Star docks in Corio Quay". Geelong Advertiser. 22 April 2015. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  8. ^ "Trawler backer lashes out at 'naive' opponents rallying against Geelong Star". ABC. 28 April 2015. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  9. ^ "Largest fish trawler Geelong Star arrives in Australian waters". Sydney Morning Herald. 1 April 2015. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  10. ^ Hawkins, John (9 February 2017). "Seafish Tasmania, Cocaine, Trawlers and a fine Stink …". Tasmania Times. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
  11. ^ For earlier super trawler issues Australian Broadcasting Corporation. News (12 September 2012), Seafish Tasmania welcomes legislation's debate, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, retrieved 19 November 2017
  12. ^ Fitzgibbon, Joel (25 November 2015), Transcript of press conference: Parliament House, Canberra: 25 November 2015: Senate motion relating to the Geelong Star, retrieved 19 November 2017
  13. ^ Hunt, Greg (5 May 2015), Transcript of interview with Mark Parton: 2CC Canberra: 5 May 2015: Q&A; climate change; Geelong Star, retrieved 19 November 2017
  14. ^ "Factory trawler Geelong Star turns off tracking device, fearing activist backlash". ABC. 20 May 2015. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  15. ^ Whish-Wilson, Peter (22 November 2016), Super trawler Geelong Star leaves Australian waters in mysterious circumstances, retrieved 19 November 2017
  16. ^ Australian Fisheries Management Authority (23 November 2016), Departure of the Geelong Star from Australian waters, retrieved 19 November 2017
  17. ^ "Geelong Star returns to The Netherlands after breakdown in deal with Seafish Tasmania". Mercury. 24 November 2016. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  18. ^ Australian Broadcasting Corporation. News (17 September 2015), Green light for controversial trawler rubs environmentalists wrong way, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, retrieved 19 November 2017
  19. ^ Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Radio National (23 March 2015), Environmentalists to fight new fishing 'super trawler', Australian Broadcasting Corporation, retrieved 19 November 2017
  20. ^ "Protesters take 'super trawler' dispute to River Derwent". ABC. 19 April 2015. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  21. ^ "Protest against the super trawler Geelong Star sends a strong message, Geelong rally told". Geelong Advertiser. 18 May 2015. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  22. ^ Australian Broadcasting Corporation. News (16 April 2015), New political party launched in opposition to super trawlers, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, retrieved 19 November 2017
  23. ^ "Geelong Star: Factory Trawler that's subject of Senate Inquiry disappears from Australian Waters". ABC. 23 November 2016. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  24. ^ "Environmental anger grows after Geelong Star snags a whale shark". 17 February 2016. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  25. ^ "Trawler Geelong Star kills 'small number' of fur seals during fishing trip off NSW". ABC. 17 February 2016. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  26. ^ "Sarah Henderson urges Liberal colleague to ban Geelong Star trawler". Geelong Advertiser. 6 May 2015. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  27. ^ "Fight to prevent videos showing dolphins caught in Geelong Star's nets from being released". Mercury. 2 June 2016. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  28. ^ Colbeck, Richard (13 February 2015), Geelong Star registered to fish the small pelagic fishery, retrieved 19 November 2017
  29. ^ "Progress made on Geelong Star negotiations" (Press release). Senator the Hon. Anne Ruston. 1 December 2015. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
  30. ^ Ruston, Anne (25 February 2016), Progress made on Geelong Star negotiations, retrieved 19 November 2017
  31. ^ "Fisheries authority considers streaming video from boats to ensure safety of marine life". Barossa Herald. 11 November 2016. Retrieved 19 November 2017.

External links[edit]