ISSF 2022-14: A Snapshot of the Large-Scale Tropical Tuna Purse Seine Fishing Fleets as of July 2022*

Date Added: July 19, 2022
Authors: Ana Justel-Rubio, Dr. Lorena Recio
Downloaded: 211 times
Tags: Capacity Management, Purse Seine, RFMOs, Tuna
Language: English
Featured: True
Report Type: Technical Report


Purse-seine fishing vessels catch about 66% of the 5.1 million tonnes of tunas taken annually worldwide (ISSF, 2022). Of the tropical tunas, purse seiners generally target skipjack (Katsuwonus pelamis) and yellowfin (Thunnus albacares), though they also catch bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) associated primarily with floating objects.

In recent years, several authors have estimated the number of vessels and fishing capacity of tropical tuna purse seine fleets either regionally (e.g., Gillett and Lewis, 2003) or globally (Joseph, 2003; Reid et al., 2005; Restrepo and Forrestal, 2012; Justel-Rubio and Restrepo, 2014, 2015, and 2016; Justel-Rubio et al., 2017, 2018, Justel-Rubio and Recio, 2019, 2020 and 2021). The aim of this paper is to provide an updated “snapshot” of the purse seine fleet as of July 2022 based primarily on the records of authorized vessels established by the five tuna RFMOs, as in Restrepo and Forrestal (2012) and all subsequent versions of this study. Some of the key factors considered in this series of update studies are new vessels that are launched and improvements to the data contained in the RFMO records.

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