Stop Overfishing Bigeye Tuna


Target: Russell F. Smith, III — Deputy Assistant Secretary for the International Fisheries National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Goal: Help end the overfishing of bigeye tuna and propose a new fishing quota

The Pacific Bigeye tuna has been overfished in the western and central Pacific tuna fisheries. While the species is not at risk for extinction, efforts need to be reduced to ensure long-term sustainability. At a meeting with the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission on December 2, the commission is taking the problem into consideration by proposing a set fishing quota for fishermen. A fishing quota will greatly limit the access to tuna. Hopefully this will help deal with the problem of overfishing and preserve not only the bigeye tuna, but the entire tuna species.

Most bigeye tuna are caught with large fishing nets that also sweep up other types of tuna fish, sharks, and sea turtles. According to the Center of Biological Diversity, the animals are attracted to the fisherman’s fish aggregating devices. The other half of the bigeye tuna that are being fished are caught with longlines set out for hours hanging hundreds of hooks. Unfortunately, longlines end up catching up plenty of other sea life as well. If there was an implemented fishing quota, it would make the fishermen more mindful of their catch.

Please take action to urge the commission to go through with their proposed fishing quota and control fishing that threatens species into extinction.


Dear Russell F. Smith, III,

For over 10 years, bigeye tuna have been subjected to overfishing in the Pacific Ocean. The proposed idea is to make significant cuts to catching bigeye tuna and to implement a fishing quota for all fishermen. The people using fish aggregating devices and longline traps need to accept significant catch reductions. We know you have a meeting on December 2 with the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission. Please use that opportunity to talk about the overfishing of bigeye tuna. Although they are not at risk of extinction, at the rate that fishermen are going, it could occur sooner than expected.

Although the problem is seen internationally and nationally, the United States plays a huge part in the conservation of bigeye tuna. By limiting fishermen, we can see a substantial growth in the number of bigeye tuna as well as other sea animals such as the fishes, sharks, and turtles.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Allen Shimada via Wikimedia Commons

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