Happy World Tuna Day!
Yes, you read correctly.
In 2011, the eight Pacific Island countries that comprise much of the world’s tuna fishing waters declared May 2 to be World Tuna Day. Today marks the very first—a time for global celebration of these amazing fish and a reminder of the need to conserve them.
From the gigantic, warm-blooded, 1,500-pound (680-kilogram) Atlantic bluefin to the smallest skipjack, the label “tuna” actually includes more than 20 species that range from the tropics to the frigid waters of the Arctic and the Southern Ocean.
World Tuna Day recognizes the critical role these fish play in marine ecosystems. They support some of the world’s largest and most valuable fisheries, as well as many people who rely on them for their livelihoods.
For the love of tuna
This special day recognizes that to have healthy populations of tuna in the future, we need to make efforts now to end overfishing.
The relentless demand for sushi and canned tuna in recent decades, coupled with ever more efficient ways of fishing, have driven some tuna populations to less than 10 percent of their unfished levels.
More hooks and nets are set in the ocean for tuna than for any other group of fish.
In the Mediterranean, huge nets scoop up schools of eastern Atlantic bluefin on their spawning grounds.
In the Pacific, the last remaining healthy stocks of tuna are under greater pressure than ever as industrial fishing fleets move in to catch them.
This special day recognizes that to have healthy populations of tuna for the future, we need to make efforts now to end overfishing and ensure that the gear used on them doesn’t imperil other ocean life.
The Pew Environment Group is leading a global campaign to change tuna fishing practices and policies to ensure that ecosystem health and long-term sustainability are given priority over short-term economic gains.
We celebrate tuna now—and we look forward to doing so well into the future.