On stardate 57538.9, the Merced and USS Cerritos worked together to recover a recently discovered ancient generation ship. As the two ships simultaneously towed the derelict with their tractor beams, a moment of one-upmanship from Durango led to a leakage of terraforming fluid from the alien vessel.
The terraforming fluid transformed the hulls of both ships into organic materials. While Captain Carol Freeman and Lieutenant Beckett Mariner managed to reverse the effects of the transformation before major functions were lost aboard the Cerritos, the Merced was too heavily damaged with its life support failing. Fortunately, the entire crew complement of the Merced were saved when Captain Freeman and Lt. Mariner performed an emergency transport from the Cerritos, and placed them into the still-sealed-off stasis chamber of the generation ship, safe from effects of the terraforming fluid. (LD: "Moist Vessel")
- See: USS Merced personnel
|USS Alhambra • USS Cerritos • USS Merced • USS Rubidoux • USS Solvang • Unnamed|
The Merced has blue markings on its hull. According to Star Trek: Lower Decks series creator Mike McMahan, a California-class ship with blue hull markings is "usually deployed to places where there has to be more medical expertise." 
- Merced-class, a starship type different from the California class