Atlantic Giant Bluefin Tuna a Critically Endangered Species

October 3, 2008 / 1 Comment

For a sushi fan like me, that would do anything for a bite of tuna, be it rolls (sashimi or whatever comes out from the chefs’ knives) these days, the fact that the Atlantic giant bluefin tuna is an endangered species kind of shocked me. And it does, because I never even considered that the fish I’m serving could go extinct in the next few years.

atlantic giant bluefin tuna Atlantic Giant Bluefin Tuna a Critically Endangered Species

But let’s make sure we’re clear on that one, because you shouldn’t stop eating tuna. You should stop eating the Western Atlantic giant bluefin tuna because stocks on a global basis are severely over-fished. Usually the bluefin tuna is a very large fish, with a big mouth and a robust cigar-shaped body that can live for 30 years and reach incredible weighs and lengths. The record is 680kg and 4.3 meters long.

atlantic giant bluefin tuna meat Atlantic Giant Bluefin Tuna a Critically Endangered SpeciesObviously, due to overfishing (usually commercial fishermen using purse seine gear) the bluefin tuna only grows one meter long and only weighs 35 kg. It’s money that drives all these people because I’ve heard that a single giant tuna can exceed $100,000 at the Tokyo fish market …

So what can be done, knowing that the giant bluefin tuna provides most of the tuna used in sushi, because if we don’t change something there won’t be any fish to put on rice?

1. Ask your sushi chef if what they serve is bluefin tuna, and if yes don’t order it. Tell the chef that it’s a critically endangered species.

2. Go to which is a social network started by John LoGioco. Their putting everything in to help save the Atlantic Bluefin tuna. I’m am a member already. They are supporting a science group called Tag-A-Giant with donations and everything else that will help satellite tagging of the blue fin tuna so that nations can manage on a eco system basis and not a national basis.

What do you say?

Images courtesy of 1, 2