I'm watching the Voyager episode Persistence of Vision from season 2.

Two ships just decloaked off the bow of the ship and Commander Chakotay ordered evasive maneuvers. The Captain in me said he should've called for (at least) a Yellow Alert, shields up, before opening a channel or evasive maneuvers.

The alien vessels fired on Voyager and Mr. Tuvok reported shields at a certain %. I was stunned — how is it that the shields were even up, unless they are always up?

KIM: Two ships decloaking.

TUVOK: The Bothan ship is powering up weapons.

CHAKOTAY: Evasive maneuver gamma five.



TUVOK: Shields at eighty seven percent. Minor damage on decks four and twelve.

  • How far through the episode were you when this scene came up?
    – Tim
    Nov 28, 2016 at 3:44
  • @Tim 25 minutes (no commercials included). It's just after Tuvoc ended the transmission with the alien ship because he was detecting sensor anomalies.
    – Hack-R
    Nov 28, 2016 at 3:47
  • 10
    I didn't realize until I looked at the transcript that they were Bothans. Many of them died to bring you this question.
    – Hack-R
    Nov 28, 2016 at 3:57
  • 1
    I would imagine that Yellow Alert status (including shields) is standard when you have reason to believe that you may be traveling through hostile space. Nov 28, 2016 at 4:07
  • 1
    It's possible that the crew of Voyager, being in a fairly unknown (scary) place with no real guides except Neelix and Kes, tries to keep the ship shields up as a general rule. Nov 28, 2016 at 5:08

1 Answer 1


It's clear from Memory Alpha that they are aware that Voyager is travelling through potentially hostile territory..

When Janeway arrives on the bridge, Neelix warns Janeway that he has heard reports of numerous ships disappearing without explanation in Bothan space. He also warns her that the Bothans fiercely protect their territory from outsiders.

It's reasonable to assume that they are travelling at a heightened state of readiness (with shields up) even if this hasn't yet risen to the level of an "official" Yellow Alert.


A Bothan representative appears on the viewscreen and questions Chakotay about Voyager's weapon capabilities. Tuvok terminates the transmission while making the termination look accidental. He has encountered suspicious energy readings that may indicate cloaked ships.

Tuvok might have taken it upon himself (as Security Officer) to raise the shields as part of his preparations without, again, calling a ship-wide Yellow Alert.

Remember, this all happens very quickly!

  • 9
    How many Bothans died to bring us this information?
    – Hack-R
    Nov 28, 2016 at 12:07

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