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Yellowfin Tuna (Thunnus albacares) Photographs and Information

Also known as Allison Tuna and Ahi (Hawaii)

The caudal fin of the yellowfin tuna is distinctly notched in an "M" chape at the centre of its fork.  Behind the second dorsal fin and the anal fin, the body profile of the yellowfin tuna is somewhat flat.  The ventral surface of the liver is smooth and the right lobe is longer than the central lobe.

Yellowfin tuna adults are distinguished by having a moderately long pectoral fin that is one third to one quarter the body fork length.  In juveniles there are about 20 broken pale lines crossing the lower sides.  In large fish, the second dorsal and anal fins may be exceedingly elongated and bright yellow.  Yellowfin tuna less than 75cm fork length (10kg whole weight) may be difficult to distinguish from small bigeye tuna

A beautiful and colourful tuna.  Blue to steel black above, silver to silvery gold on the flanks, silvery white below.  In fresh fish a band of bright gold or iridescent blue (sometimes both) runs along the upper flank, separating the dark back from the lighter belly area.

The stomach area sometimes carries oval, colourless patches and vague broken vertical bars of white.  These are more obvious in juveniles.

The yellowfins fins are bright yellow.  The finlets, in particular are canary yellow with black margins.

In Australian waters fish of between 2 and 80kg are common with some specimens reaching 100kg.  In other countries Yellowfin have been recorded in excess of 150kg.

Yellowfin Tuna are found close inshore, in clean warm currents, but are more common on the Continental Shelf areas.  They prefer clean water with water temperatures of 17-27șC.  They rarely venture into dirty, discoloured areas.

Yellowfin feed both on the surface, and well down in the water column.

Yellowfin is a very good eating fish (yellowfin tuna recipes).  It is extremely good as sashimi (raw fish).

Small yellowfin (2-12kg) will take trolled and cast lures, small live baits and sometimes freely drifted pilchards or cut flesh strips.  Larger yellowfin take small and medium live baits, up to and including live frigate mackerel, bonito and striped tuna weighing as much as 5kg plus.

Yellowfin are extremely powerful and demand the best in tackle and gaffs!

Yellowfin is often marketed as ahi, from its Hawaiian name ʻahi although the name ʻahi in Hawaiian also refers to the closely related bigeye tuna. Although the species name Albacares might suggest otherwise, the fish usually known as albacore is a different species of tuna, Thunnus alalunga. The yellowfin tuna is sometimes referred to as albacora by French and Portuguese fishermen.

Yellowfin tuna prey include other fish, pelagic crustaceans, and squid. Like all tunas their body shape is evolved for speed, enabling them to pursue and capture fast-moving baitfish such as flying fish, saury and mackerel. Schooling species such as myctophids or lantern fish and similar pelagic drift fish, anchovies and sardines are frequently taken. Large yellowfin prey on smaller members of the tuna family such as frigate mackerel and skipjack tuna.

In turn, yellowfin are preyed upon when young by other pelagic hunters including larger tuna, seabirds and predatory fishes such as wahoo, shark and billfish. As they increase in size and speed, yellowfin become able to escape most of their predators. Adults are threatened only by the largest and fastest hunters such as toothed whales, particularly the false killer whale, pelagic sharks such as the mako and great white, and large blue marlin and black marlin. Industrial tuna fisheries represent by far their most threatening predator.

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Yellowfin Tuna (Thunnus albacares)
French: Albacore
German: Gelbflossenthun
Italian: Tonno Albacora
Spanish: Rabil
Japanese: Kihada
Hawaii names: `Ahi

Did you know?
Tuna cannot pump water over their gills like other fish, instead they swim with their mouths open which forces the water over their gills. If they stop swimming they will suffocate.

Did you know?
Tuna have hearts that are much larger than other fish, they are about 10 times as large, relative to the size of the body.

Scientific Name Thunnus albacares
Location QLD, NSW, VIC, TAS, SA, WA
Season All year round
Size Over 150 kg
Australian Species Code 37 441002
Taste, Texture Strong flavour.  Medium to firm texture.


Nutritional Information
For every 100 grams raw product
for Yellowfin Tuna fillet.

Kilojoules 521 (124 calories)
Cholesterol 30 mg
Sodium 37 g
Total fat (oil) 0.5 g
Saturated fat 33% of total fat
Monounsaturated fat 13% of total fat
Polyunsaturated fat 54% of total fat
Omega-3, EPA 14 mg
Omega-3, DHA 100 mg
Omega-6, AA 15 mg


Other Yellowfin Tuna Links:


Recipes for Tuna from How To Cook Fish


Fishing Angling for Yellowfin Tuna | Tuna Fishing :


Yellowfin tuna are fished in near-coastal and offshore regions of New South Wales and can be caught by trolling lures or fishing live or dead baits at anchor or on the drift. Pilchards, small skipjack tuna and mackerel are common baits used by anglers. These tuna can also be caught from drifting boats using dead or live bait such as redfish or nannygai along with berley.

Yellowfin tuna are some of the most popular game fish in the world, and given their tremendous fight, size, and tastiness, it's easy to see why. Once you tie into a big one, you may never go back to other game fish. And whether you bring that big yellowfin home to eat or to hang on the wall, you'll have a fish story to be proud of.

Cooking Yellowfin Tuna:

To Buy
Yellowfin tuna is usually sold as steaks, cutlets or sliced as sashimi. Look for bright red flesh (colour can vary with cut) that is firm, lustrous and moist without any dull brown markings or oozing water and with a pleasant fresh sea smell. Always buy sashimi-grade fish if it is to be served raw or rare.

Find out how to store, cook yellowfin tuna, different cooking methods of yellowfin, microwave cooking times for fish, nutritional information of yellowfin tuna and delicious recipes using tuna.


Commercial Fishing for Yellowfin Tuna:

The yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares) is one of the most economically important fish in the world. Hundreds of thousands of tons are taken by commercial fishermen worldwide every year. If you open a can of tuna, if it's not albacore, then it is probably yellowfin tuna. This species, also called Allison tuna, has a wide range: it is found in a thick band around the equator throughout the world, inhabiting warm seas from the US-Canada border latitudes in the north to Australia in the south, and frequents depths from the surface down to 100 fathoms.

Modern commercial fisheries catch yellowfin tuna with encircling nets (purse seines), and by industrial longlines.


More links about Yellowfin Tuna and Tuna Information

West coast Tuna fishing history, Tuna Industry in San Diego, San Diego Tuna Boats, The Tuna Association of Ecuador, Pending world record yellowfin tuna story, general information about yellowfin tuna, Sea-Ex Trade Directory of Exporters of yellowfin tuna, importers of yellowfin tuna, processors and wholesalers.






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