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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
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Spoonbill

 

Any of several wading birds closely allied to the ibises, having bills greatly expanded and flattened at the tip.

 

(MSC-202: dp. 412; 1. 145'; b. 28'; dr. 9'; s. 12.8 k.; cpl. 40; a. 2 .50 cal. mg., 1 81mm M; cl. Redwing)

 

Spoonbill (MSC-202) was laid down as AMD-202 on 2 November 1953 by Tampa Marine Co., Tampa, Fla.; launched on 3 August 1954: sponsored by Mrs. A. N. Springer; redesignated as MSC-202 on 7 February 1955; and commissioned on 14 June 1955, Lt. (jg.) Arthur P. Ismay in command.

 

Spoonbill was among the first in a group of nonmagnetic minesweepers of wooden construction capable of sweeping any conventional type mine constructed at the time. On 4 July 1955, she was assigned to United States Mine Force, Atlantic Fleet, Charleston, S.C. After shakedown training off Key West, Fla., from 26 July to 24 August and post-shakedown availability at Rawles Brothers' Shipyard, Jacksonville, Fla., Spoonbill returned to Charleston.

 

She steamed from Charleston on 3 February 1956 for Yorktown, Va., where she was assigned duty with the Naval Mine Warfare School, embarking students for daily cruises to participate in minesweeping operations and training with fleet units. The ship sailed for Argenita, Newfoundland, on 8 January 1957 and participated in fleet exercises from 15 January to 7 February when she returned to Charleston. Spoonbill operated from there until 4 February 1958 when she got underway for the west coast. The minesweeper transited the Panama Canal on the 11th and arrived at San Diego on the 28th. She moved up the coast to Treasure Island and conducted operations from there until 2 February 1959.

 

Ordered back to the east coast, Spoonbill arrived at Norfolk on 9 March to enter the navy yard for an overhaul in preparation for transfer to Spain. Spoonbill was struck from the Navy list on 16 June 1959 and transferred to Spain on 1 July under the Military Assistance Program. She has served the Spanish Navy as Duero (M-28) into 1975.