close up of tuna swimming in the ocean

Archived Project

Global Tuna Conservation

Tuna are the most commercially valuable fish on Earth and are vital players in healthy ocean ecosystems.

Four species of tuna—bluefin, bigeye, yellowfin, and skipjack—account for at least $42 billion of the $150 billion annual global seafood trade, support millions of jobs, and help ensure food security for some 3 billion people.

But those four species are also in trouble. Heavy fishing has driven the Pacific bluefin population down to a mere 4 percent of what it once was. The widespread use of fish aggregating devices—rafts of material that attract schools of fish—has led to an alarming increase in the catch of juvenile tuna, jeopardizing the chances that some stocks can recover.

This situation is the result of decades of overfishing and mismanagement exacerbated by illegal fishing, which is rampant in some regions. With the huge global demand for tuna, governments and fisheries management bodies must act now to reverse these species’ decline.

Pew worked to improve the international management of tuna species by:

  • Promoting science-based catch limits that do not allow overfishing.
  • Minimizing the impacts of destructive fishing gears.
  • Eliminating illegal fishing.
  • Increasing the transparency and accountability of tuna regional fisheries management organizations.
Issue Brief

L’histoire du thon obèse de l’Atlantique

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Issue Brief

Tout ce que fait le thon obèse de l’Atlantique (Thunnus obesus), il le fait avec rapidité. Cette espèce atteint sa maturité sexuelle en seulement deux à trois ans, période au cours de laquelle il passe d’une taille si petite qu’il peut se faufiler à travers le chas d’une aiguille à un individu de plus de 180 kg. Ce prédateur étonnant peut nager plus vite, coincer et dévorer toute créature susceptible de rentrer dans sa gueule. Néanmoins, sa grande taille en fait une cible de choix pour les navires de pêche au thon qui sillonnent les océans du monde entier.

Fact Sheet

Additional FAD Management Measures Needed in International Fisheries

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Fact Sheet

Additional FAD Management Measures Needed in International Fisheries

Pour augmenter leurs captures, les pêcheurs de thon du monde entier utilisent des dispositifs de concentration des poissons (DCP). Il s’agit d’objets flottants artificiels qui attirent les poissons. Toutefois, ces dispositifs engendrent de grandes quantités de captures accessoires et viennent souvent grossir le volume des déchets marins, en grande partie parce que les organisations internationales chargées de réglementer ces pêcheries n’ont mis en place que des mesures limitées pour gérer les DCP.

Article

Harvest Strategies: The Next Phase of Fisheries Management

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Article

A novel approach, known as “harvest strategies” or “management procedures,” is emerging as the next innovation in fisheries management. 

Article

Global Transshipment

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Article

Transshipment, the transfer of fish or other marine wildlife between a fishing vessel and a carrier vessel at sea or in port, is an important part of the global commercial fishing industry. Valuable tuna species, mackerel, and crabs are among the freshly caught seafood transshipped each day in order to shorten the time it takes to get the fish from the sea to the store. 

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