Life Story

    Although Atlantic Bluefin have a wide habitat range, they spawn in only two locations.  One group spawns in the Gulf of Mexico, while another travels to the Mediterranean.  Spawning in the Gulf of Mexico occurs from mid-April to mid-June, and during this time females can release up to 30 million eggs.  Males release their sperm at the same tiBluefin larvae courtesy of NOAAme the females release their eggs, resulting in mating between many different individuals at one time.  The most concentrated spawning occurs in the northern part of the gulf, but some spawning occurs along the coast of Texas and Florida.
    Spawning in the Mediterranean occurs from June through August.  The most concentrated spawning area occurs around southern Italy.  The differences in spawning time could be due to environmental cues. Spawning in the Gulf of Mexico occurs when the water is between 75 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit, whereas spawning in the Mediterranean takes place when the water is between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
    The larvae are about 3mm when they hatch and th
Bluefin spawning formation courtesy of NOAAey grow at a rate of about 1mm per day after that.  As they grow, they will eventually break up into schools based on size.  Female Bluefins reach sexual maturity at about 3-5 years old.  They will spawn in the same location that they hatched.  For example, if the tuna hatched in the Mediterranean, it would return to the Mediterranean to spawn.  The average lifetime is about 15 years, but some have been known to survive to be 20-30 years old.