Fisheries and Resources Monitoring System

Albacore - Indian Ocean
Fact Sheet Title  Fact Sheet
Stock status report 2020
Albacore - Indian Ocean
Fact Sheet Citation  
Albacore Indian Ocean
Owned byIndian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC) – ownership
ident Blockident Blockdisplay tree map
Species List:
Species Ref: en - Albacore, fr - Germon, es - Atún blanco, ru - Тунец длинноперый

Fishery Indicators
Production: Catch
ident Block Albacore - Indian Ocean
Aq Res
Biological Stock: Yes        Management unit: Yes
Reference year: 2017
Aq Res State Trend
Aq Res State Trend
Aq Res State Trend Aq Res State Trend
Aq Res State TrendSubject to overfishing (F2017/FMSY (80% CI) = 1.346 (0.588–2.171))Moderate fishing mortality
Aq Res State TrendNot overfished (SBcurrent/SBMSY (80% CI) = 1.281 (0.574–2.071))Pre-exploitation biomass or high abundance
Habitat Bio
Climatic Zone: Temperate; Tropical.   Horizontal Dist: Oceanic.   Vertical Dist: Pelagic.  

Geo Dist
Geo Dist: Highly migratory

Geo Dist
Geo Dist
Aq Res Struct
Biological Stock: Yes

In the Indian Ocean, there is probably only one southern stock, distributed from 5°N to 40°S, because there is no northern gyre.
Fishery Indicators
TypeMeasureValueUnitTime period
ProductionCatch 3736tonnesAverage 1950 - 1959
Catch 17347tonnesAverage 1960 - 1969
Catch 17310tonnesAverage 1970 - 1979
Catch 22417tonnesAverage 1980 - 1989
Catch 30472tonnesAverage 1990 - 1999
Catch 35339tonnesAverage 2000 - 2009
Catch 37395tonnesAverage 2010 - 2019
Catch 33902tonnes2011
Catch 33355tonnes2012
Catch 32691tonnes2013
Catch 38414tonnes2014
Catch 35628tonnes2015
Catch 35761tonnes2016
Catch 38932tonnes2017
Catch 41615tonnes2018
Catch 39517tonnes2019
Catch 38083tonnes2020
Bio Assess

A new stock assessment was carried out for albacore in 2019 to update the assessment undertaken in 2016. The stock assessment was carried out using Stock Synthesis III (SS3), a fully integrated model that is currently also used to provide scientific advice for the three tropical tunas stocks in the Indian Ocean. The model used in 2019 is based on the model developed in 2016 with a series of revisions that were noted during the WPTmT data preparatory meeting held in January 2019. There are some noticeable changes in spatial distribution of longline catches compared to the previous assessment data set, with historical catch shifted to equatorial regions (LL1 and LL2) from southern fisheries (LL3 and LL4). This is due to revisions in the historical catch data carried out since the last assessment. The stock status in relation to the Commission’s BMSY and FMSY target reference points indicates that the stock is not overfished but is subject to overfishing.
Assess Models
Type:  Age-structured
Stock Synthesis III (SS3)
Sci Advice

Although considerable uncertainty remains in the SS3 assessment conducted in 2019, particularly due to the conflicts in key data inputs, a precautionary approach to the management of albacore tuna should be applied. The K2SM indicates that catch reductions are required in order to prevent the biomass from declining to below MSY levels in the short term, due to the low recent recruitment levels. Although there is considerable uncertainty in the projections, current catches are exceeding the estimated MSY level.
Management unit: Yes
IOTC. 2020. Albacore. Executive Summary.  Click to open
IOTC–SC23 2020. Report of the 23rd Session of the IOTC Scientific Committee. Seychelles, 7 – 11 December 2020. IOTC–2020–SC23–R[E]: 211pp.  Click to open
All references to figures, tables and bibliography in the text are found within the source of information.
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