"Those Magnificent Giants"
The Spring 1999 issue of the Big Game Fishing Journal (pictured at left) contains a feature article written by fisheries biologist, Jim Chambers, entitled "Those Magnificent Giants."  It describes the thrill of hunting then fighting a 600-pound giant bluefin tuna - the author's first (pictured to the left with his mentor, Jack Cashman, r.).  Chambers used the excitement of such an adventure to illustrate how wonderful bluefin are, but also that they are at the brink of extinction.  Bluefin have great speed, power and endurance, and are the world's most highly evolved fish.  But, Japanese buyers will pay huge sums for quality bluefin (used for sashimi) over-stimulating demand and putting them in great danger.  Overfishing has driven the western Atlantic bluefin population to only 3 percent of the abundance existing before industrial scale fishing began to affect it in 1960. "Our" bluefin are too close to slipping into extinction.  For details, see the Bluefin Tuna page using the link listed in red below left.  Until the annual bluefin quota is eliminated by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT), ostensibly managing this and all other tuna-like stocks to achieve the MSY level, this excessive fishing pressure (both commercial and recreational) will continue to prevent this stock from recovering to a healthy population level.  Chambers is working hard (including preparation a petition to have bluefin "listed" as a "threatened or endangered species" and then protected under the Endangered Species Act) to eliminate such overfishing to help the stock rebuild.  For the full text (and photos) of "Those Magnificent Giants" click HERE.
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Going, Going, Gone
Headed for Extinction

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