HMCS Shearwater

There have been only two units named HMCS Shearwater in the Royal Canadian Navy.

HMCS Shearwater (1st of name) (K02)

Built by His Majesty’s Dockyard in Sheerness, England and launched on 10 February 1900, the Condor Class sloop HMS Shearwater was stationed at Esquimalt, British Columbia, when the First World Was begun. She was one of the last remnants of the vanished Royal Navy Pacific Squadron. To defend Seymour Narrows, two of HMCS Shearwater’s 4-inch (102-mm) guns were put ashore when the war broke out, and her crew was sent to Halifax, Nova Scotia, to man the cruiser HMCS Niobe. The Admiralty agreed to lend HMCS Shearwater to the Royal Canadian Navy, and on 8 September 1914, she was commissioned as a tender to Canada’s newly acquired submarines CC-1 and CC-2.

In the summer of 1917, she sailed with her charges via the Panama Canal to Halifax. She was paid off 13 June 1919 and in 1924 sold into mercantile hands and renamed Vedas. Her register was closed in 1937.

  • Displacement: 995.7 tonnes
  • Dimensions: 62.2 m x 10 m x 3.5 m
  • Speed: 12 knots
  • Armament: four 4-pound (1.8 kg) guns and four 3-pound (1.4 kg) guns

HMCS Shearwater (2nd of name)

HMCS Shearwater was originally created as a sea base in August 1918, when the small promontory in Halifax Harbour's Eastern Passage, known as Baker's Point, became an U.S. Naval Air Station Halifax. Through perseverance and urgency, the Air Station at Dartmouth became a reality and the birthplace of maritime patrol aviation in Canada. After activation as a Canadian Air Force Station and later, Royal Canadian Air Force Station Dartmouth, the seaplane base became home for a number of early flying boats and many bomber reconnaissance squadrons that played a major role in the Battle of the Atlantic.

HMCS Shearwater was the birthplace of Canadian naval aviation. She was commissioned on 1 December 1948 and was home to Canada's naval air squadrons when not embarked on aircraft carriers. With the integration of the Armed Forces in 1968, Shearwater was paid off on 1 April 1966 to become a Canadian Forces Base (CFB) and finally, an Air Command Wing and lodger unit supported by CFB Halifax. Today, CFB Shearwater's Sea Kings still participate in the vanguard of peacekeeping operations, having distinguished themselves in maritime operations in the Persian Gulf, the Red Sea, Somalia, Haiti and the Adriatic Sea.

Motto:Supra Mare Volamus” (We Fly Over The Sea) 

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