Sustainable management of neritic tunas in Southeast Asia: Longtail tuna and kawakawa in focus
Oceanic and neritic tunas are abundant and commonly found in the waters throughout Southeast Asia. While oceanic tunas migrate over oceans and seas, neritic tunas mostly inhabit the economic zones and subregional marine waters of Southeast Asia. All tuna resources are economically important in Southeast Asia, generating export revenues for the countries and providing important protein sources for domestic consumption. While the catch of the oceanic tunas is reported to have declined but that of the neritic tuna species continues to increase making these species becoming more important and increasingly the target of exploitation by commercial and local fisheries, especially now that attractive prices are offered by processing companies for such species. Therefore, it is necessary to address the status of and uncertainties in the distribution, migration, and utilization of neritic tuna stocks in the waters and sub-regions of Southeast Asia, prior to the development of appropriate tuna management measures and plans at the national and sub-regional levels.