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Trawler

From Academic Kids

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A modern Icelandic trawler

A trawler is a fishing vessel designed for the purpose of operating a trawl, a net that is dragged along the bottom of the sea (or sometimes above the bottom at a specified depth). Modern "rock hopper" nets implement heavy rubber wheels that allow the net to crawl over rough ocean bottoms without tearing on rocks.

Sailing trawlers were limited to trawling at depths of 55-75 metres, while modern trawlers often trawl to 900 metres, with experiments having gone even deeper. Sizes of modern trawlers vary, but range up to vessels of 2,500 to 3,000 tons.

Refrigeration machinery aboard allows trawlers to stay out for several weeks filling the hold.

One of the biggest ports in England for trawlers was the city of Kingston upon Hull (or simply 'Hull') in Yorkshire on England's north-east coast.

The largest fishing port in Europe from the 1970's onwards has been Peterhead in the North-East corner of Scotland. In it's prime in the 1980's Peterhead had over 500 trawlers operating on a weekly basis. The port has seen a significant decline in the number of vessels and the value of fish landed due to the impact of the European Union fishing policies. These policies, which have been based on controversial scientific advice, have resulted in a concerted effort to reduce the size of the Scottish Fishing Fleet.

During World War I and World War II, many trawlers were used as minesweepers, the activities being similar, and both the crew and the equipment aboard already suited to the task. During the Cold War, some countries often used trawlers outfitted with additional electronic gear to monitor the activities of their enemies.

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