Tuna Cowboys, Nat Geo Doc Produced & Directed by Mike Bhana & 2015 WWF Illegal Fishing Report

Tuna Cowboys Logo from Motion Pacific Website.Tuna Cowboys is an award winning National Geographic documentary that ventures into the Southern Ocean to capture the first ever footage of the Southern Blue Fin Tuna muster. Produced and directed by Mike Bhana at Natural History New Zealand, Motion Pacific provided topside camera and field director services to the project.

Tuna are on the edge of extinction after four decades of ferocious industrial fishing and the technology for making the hunt easier has evolved while the ability of the tuna to avoid the hunters has not. One of the most amazing creatures in the oceans, Bluefin Tuna, also happens to be one of the tastiest and it has been coveted by many cultures for centuries. However, like sharks and whales, it has fallen victim to rapidly rising populations, a sushi craze that has popularized raw fish consumption, ever larger fishing trawlers that have the ability to rapidly strip the oceans clean of everything in sight.      

Tuna Cowboys: National Geographic Documentary


1) WorldFest Film Festival – September 2004: Best of the Festival Awards,
2) WorldFest Film Festival – April 2004: Special Jury Prize – Creative Excellence in Film,
3) Belgrade Underwater Film Festival – December 2003: 2nd Place in Group A,
4) Mondial Film Festival – France November 2003: Palme D’Or – Best Film

Photo of shooting Tuna Cowboys with able seaman Ed Jowett (NHNZ) at the wheel.

The Global High Seas Marine Preserve seeks to ban industrial and commercial fishing in international waters with enforcement being led by the United States Navy working with the maritime military forces of industrialized nations. Billions of people depend on the oceans for survival and, should the ocean ecosystems collapse, it could mean starvation, economic collapse and armed conflict. Pollution and overfishing might possibly create dead oceans forever.   

Appetite for Destruction: Eating Bluefin Tuna Into Extinction

Sushi has become a staple of nearly every American’s diet—yet most of us have no clue about the economics and environmental impact involved in getting fish from the sea to our plates. From Los Angeles to Japan, host Sasha Issenberg—journalist and author of The Sushi Economy—follows the trail of the threatened Pacific Bluefin tuna to find out if our appetite for sushi just might end up devouring this diamond of the sea.

2015 World Wildlife Fund Illegal Fishing Report
Click Image to See Whole Report in PDF Format

PDF World Wildlife Fun Illegal, Unreported, Unregulated Fishing Report 2015

Executive Summary: 
New analysis by World Wildlife Fund (WWF) finds that over 85 percent of global fish stocks can be considered at significant risk of Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing. This evaluation is based on the most recent comprehensive estimates of IUU fishing and includes the worlds’ major commercial stocks or species groups, such as all those that are regularly assessed by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Based on WWF’s findings, the majority of the stocks, 54 percent, are categorized as at high risk of IUU, with an additional 32 perent judged to be at moderate risk. Of the 567 stocks that were assessed, the findings show that 485 stocks fall into these two categories

More than half of the world’s most overexploited stocks are at the highest risk of IUU fishing. Examining IUU risk by location, the WWF analysis shows that in more than one-third of the world’s ocean basins as designated by the FAO, all of these stocks were at high or moderate risk of IUU fishing. The U.S. imports more than 100 different wild-caught species, which represent more than 400 diverse wild-caught products. In October 2015, the U.S. National Ocean Council (NOC) Working Group on IUU Fishing and Seafood Fraud released a list of species it identified as “at risk” of IUU fishing.

While there is some alignment between the species the NOC identified as “at risk” of IUU fishing and the species identified in this study, the WWF analysis demonstrates that IUU fishing is pervasive across species and regions. An effective solution to ending IUU imports into the United States must ultimately address all species entering the U.S. market.

Global High Seas Marine Preserve Video Gallery 

The first two are edited podcast videos of Danny Quintana on
Why We Need the Global High Seas Marine Preserve and Why
Have a Moral Obligation to Save the Oceans
Click Here for the GHSMP You Tube Channel