Fisheries and Resources Monitoring System

Yellowfin tuna - Indian Ocean
Fact Sheet Title  Fact Sheet
Stock status report 2020
Yellowfin tuna - Indian Ocean
Fact Sheet Citation  
Yellowfin tuna Indian Ocean
Owned byIndian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC) – ownership
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Species List:
Species Ref: en - Yellowfin tuna, fr - Albacore, es - Rabil, ru - Тунец желтоперый

Fishery Indicators
Production: Catch
ident Block Yellowfin tuna - 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 (plausible range) = 1.20 (1.00–1.71))High fishing mortality
Aq Res State TrendOverfished (SB2017/SBMSY (plausible range) = 0.83 (0.74–0.97))Low 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

The tag recoveries of the RTTP-IO [Regional Tuna Tagging Project-Indian Ocean] provide evidence of large movements of yellowfin tuna, thus supporting the assumption of a single stock for the Indian Ocean.
Fishery Indicators
TypeMeasureValueUnitTime period
ProductionCatch 27548tonnesAverage 1950 - 1959
Catch 51704tonnesAverage 1960 - 1969
Catch 53344tonnesAverage 1970 - 1979
Catch 127986tonnesAverage 1980 - 1989
Catch 333379tonnesAverage 1990 - 1999
Catch 395540tonnesAverage 2000 - 2009
Catch 400063tonnesAverage 2010 - 2019
Catch 335928tonnes2011
Catch 399646tonnes2012
Catch 400885tonnes2013
Catch 405972tonnes2014
Catch 402828tonnes2015
Catch 427619tonnes2016
Catch 421818tonnes2017
Catch 442140tonnes2018
Catch 448643tonnes2019
Catch 430029tonnes2020
Bio Assess

No new stock assessment was carried out for yellowfin tuna in 2020, thus, stock status is determined on the basis of the 2018 assessment and other information presented in 2020. In 2018 a new stock assessment was carried out for yellowfin tuna in the IOTC area of competence to update the stock status undertaken in 2016. On the weight-of-evidence available in 2018, the yellowfin tuna stock is determined to remain overfished and subject to overfishing.
Assess Models
Type:  Age-structured
Stock Synthesis III (SS3)
Sci Advice

The decline in stock status to below MSY level is not well understood due to various uncertainties. As a precautionary measure, the Commission should ensure that catches are reduced to end overfishing and allow the SSB to recover to SSBMSY levels. At this stage, specific catch limits are not provided.
Management unit: Yes
IOTC. 2020. Yellowfin tuna. 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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