Status of billfish resources and the billfish fisheries in the Western Central Atlantic
The study presents a review of the status of billfish resources and fisheries in the WECAFC region. It considered over 100 pertinent documents on the subject matters. Billfish are caught as bycatch in large Atlantic tuna fisheries. They represent a mere 0.76% of the tuna landings and this characteristic represents a major hurdle to objectively collect statistical data for billfish stock assessments. The review found that billfish resources have been subjected to intense exploitation in the tuna and tuna like fisheries in the Atlantic Ocean for more than 6 decades, and as consequence billfish resources appear depleted, overfished and/or undergoing overfishing.