The bluefin tuna population in the Pacific Ocean has dropped so low that a coalition of conservation groups have petitioned the National Marine Fisheries Service to protect the species under the Endangered Species Act.
According to the petition, the population has declined more than 97 percent since fishing began, largely because countries have failed to reduce fishing enough to protect the iconic species, a luxury item on sushi menus.
“Without help, we may see the last Pacific bluefin tuna sold off and lost to extinction,” said Catherine Kilduff of the Center for Biological Diversity. “New tagging research has shed light on the mysteries of where majestic bluefin tuna reproduce and migrate, so we can help save this important species. Protecting this incredible fish under the Endangered Species Act is the last hope, because fisheries management has failed to keep them off the path toward extinction.” Continue reading “Endangered species status sought for bluefin tuna”→
FRISCO — Pacific bluefin tuna won’t last long at any sustainable level without immediate and drastic intervention by fisheries managers, according to ocean advocates who are urging the federal government to adopt strict limits on bluefin tuna catch.
According to a report released today, Mediterranean fishermen have been violating quotas at will and have engaged in numerous illegal fishing practices, including misreporting catch size, hiring banned spotter planes, catching undersized fish, and trading fishing quotas.
Spawning stock of the eastern Atlantic bluefin has plummeted nearly 75 percent since 1974, The fish is the favored source of red tuna sushi and sashimi. Japan makes up three-quarters of the world market, but the fish is also served in restaurants from Paris to New York. Each year, thousands of tons of fish have been illegally caught and traded. At its peak — between 1998 and 2007 — this black market included more than one out of every three bluefin caught, conservatively valued at $400 million per year. Continue reading “Black market, fraud decimating bluefin tuna population”→
Satellite study shows key spawning area was inundated by oil during critical time of year
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Oil spewing from BP’s failed Deepwater Horizon drilling rig may have reduced the humber of juvenile bluefin tuna by 20 percent in one of two critical spawning areas in the Gulf of Mexico, according to the European Space Agency (ESA).
Careful study of satellite images showing the extent of the spill compared against a habitat index showed that the oil spread into the key spawning area in the northeastern Gulf at the most critical time, when young tuna are feeding near the surface. That means the presence of oil there is likely fatal for such tiny organisms, according to a press release from the ESA. Continue reading “Bluefin tuna population takes big hit from Gulf oil spill”→