WWF welcomes increase in bluefin tuna stock
The ICCAT assessment has revealed positive signs of bluefin tuna stock increase. Photo: Marco Carè/Marine Photobank
WWF has welcomed signs of stock increase in the East Atlantic and Mediterranean bluefin tuna stock as assessed by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT), but warns that more efforts are still needed.
The increase is a turning point for the threatened species, although ICCAT scientists have warned of the high uncertainty surrounding the assessment of the stock and have recommended that ICCAT keeps the current management rules including the total allowable catch (TAC) of 12,900t.
WWF has been campaigning to avoid the collapse of the bluefin tuna population and to ensure rational and sustainable fishing activity since 2001.
Dr Sergi Tudela, head of fisheries programmes, WWF Mediterranean, said: “There is no doubt that the first positive signs of bluefin tuna stock increase derive from improved management of the fisheries. However, there is still concern about illegal fishing of bluefin tuna in the Mediterranean due to overcapacity and control loopholes.”
WWF envisions a sustainably managed future for the East Atlantic and Mediterranean stock which will benefit marine ecosystems, fisheries communities and consumers, and is calling on ICCAT parties attending the 2012 meeting next month to follow scientific advice and maintain current measure for at least the next three years.
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