Thanks to new technology, scientists are able to place electronic tags inside tuna to track their migration patterns. Researchers are currently in the early stages of gathering solid information about these fish, so in general not a whole lot is known about tuna species. We do know that bluefin tuna use spawning migration, which means that they meet in one place and swim thousands of miles away in order to breed. One conclusion on where they end up is based on the conditions they find as the swim and that “the fish seem to prefer breeding grounds where the continental shelf is steep and the temperate is between 75 and 81 degrees Fahrenheit”. So perhaps they keep swimming until they reach a place with comfortable conditions, but two very common places for spawning are the Gulf of Mexico and in the Mediterranean. These tuna can swim extraordinary distances and even from one side of the Atlantic Ocean to the other. Yellowfin tuna are not known to follow this behavior of spawn migration and seem to stay settled in the same geographic area for most of their lives, mostly in the Atlantic Ocean near the equator.
Atlantic Bluefin Tuna migrate great distances. Some have traveled from the waters of North America to those of Europe more than once in the same year. They are strong swimmers and can reach speeds of 43 mph.
Yellowfin Tuna also have long migratory patterns. They have been known to migrate from the U.S. side of the Pacific Ocean to Japan.
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