Just as the sun was setting on Sunday, October 23, the crew of the Farley Mowat spotted the white hull of a longlining vessel.
The Farley Mowat changed course to intercept as the longliner responded to avoid interception. The Farley Mowat closed in on the longliner and identified it as the Kotoshiro Maru N27 bearing the call sign of JRYG.
The vessel was not deploying longlines and did not appear to have the gear on board to do so. It looked more it was fitted out as a packer, a vessel whose job it is to collect fish from other vessels and deliver it to a mother ship.
The Japanese vessel was spotted at 15 Degrees 7 Minutes South and 119 Degrees 32 Minutes West in the extreme Southeastern part of the Polynesian island groups. The location is about 740 miles northeast of Henderson Island and 840 miles northeast of Pitcairn's island.
This vessel indicates the presence of a Japanese fishing fleet in these waters and the crew of the Farley Mowat will be posting a continuous look-out for illegally set longlines as we transit this area of the ocean.
The Farley Mowat is expected to pass by Henderson Island on October 27 en route to Melbourne, Australia.