Student Worksheet: Overfishing of Southern Bluefin Tuna
Part A. (Complete after exploring websites pertaining to southern bluefin tuna and fishing practices.)
1. How fast do southern bluefin tuna grow? At what size/age do they mature? Do these characteristics have an impact on the vulnerability of southern bluefin tuna to overfishing? Why or why not?
2. What is the primary market for the southern bluefin tuna? How has this increased the demand and fishing effort for southern bluefin tuna?
3. What three countries account for the largest percentage of southern bluefin tuna catch? What fishing methods do they use to catch southern bluefin tuna? What are the impacts of the fishing methods on other wildlife?
4. What organization was developed to ensure the proper management and conservation of the southern bluefin tuna fishery? What are some actions that have been taken to conserve the southern bluefin tuna?
Part B. (Complete after constructing a line graph of the annual southern bluefin tuna catch.)
1. Describe the general trend in the annual southern bluefin tuna catch between 1952 and 1961. Give a possible explanation for the observed trend.
2. Describe the general trend in the annual southern bluefin tuna catch between 1961 and 2005. Give a possible explanation for the observed trend.
3. The graph you constructed shows changes in the amount of southern bluefin tuna caught by fisherman. Based on this information, do you think that changes have occurred in the actual population living in the oceans? What changes do you think have occurred?
4. Do you feel that the southern bluefin tuna population has been overfished? Why or why not?