pilot boat

noun
a boat carrying pilots to or from large ships.

Origin:
1580–90

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Example sentences
The barge and tugs were accompanied by a pilot boat captained by a local river resident.
When possible, the staff also likes to get out to the ship aboard the pilot boat to welcome its captain.
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