Tonight on Destination WILD’s Superfish, follow Rick Rosenthal, marine biologist and filmmaker, into the secret world of our oceans to catch a glimpse of the giant Bluefin tuna. The Atlantic Bluefin tuna, one of the largest predatory fish in the world’s great oceans, can be up to 10 feet long, weighing in at over 1,000 pounds – that’s one big fish! Pure muscle and strong as reinforced steel, these fish can distribute bursts of muscle activity that can cook their own flesh. Quite a battle for an ambitious fisherman, these fish can sometimes take hours to reel in but they’re worth their weight in silver –literally.
Fisherman Tony Donaldson caught a giant Bluefin tuna, a fish that demanded a record-breaking $738,000, the same as the price for silver ounce for ounce. With resale value this high, the demand for the fresh tuna has driven the Bluefin to the brink of extinction.
Female Bluefin live up to 20 years or more and may release several million eggs in a year; yet, after 10 years, on average less than one offspring remains when fishing pressure is great. However, the maximum recorded age for a Bluefin is 32 years –sometimes camouflage does pay off for these million dollar fish.
Tuna’s natural ability to avoid predation can be astonishing. Besides their camouflage, the tuna has unbelievable control over their internal body temperature, heart rate, and other internal functions. For example, the Bluefin tuna can heat up its brain and eyes to mimic or even rise above the water temperature that they’re in. This results in drastically improved vision, a great tactic when avoiding being a menu item for predators. In regards to their camouflage, they are protected from above and below due to the variation in tones –an oceanic deep blue above the lateral line and a dreamy silver below.
For the first time, we dive into the secret world of our deep oceans to witness the Bluefin tuna, a super predator, in its natural environment like never before. Tonight, witness the real power, grace, and intelligence of this elusive beauty.
Catch more incredible facts and see Rick’s footage on tonight’s episode of Destination Wild: Super Fish: Bluefin Tuna