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Profile updated on 20 January 2023
Currently, three stocks are considered to exist in the Atlantic Ocean and assessed separately by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT): North Atlantic, South Atlantic and Mediterranean. These three Atlantic swordfish stocks have been defined based on the deployment of tags as well as analyses of population genetics (Braun et al. (2019) and references cited therein). However, more research is needed since the boundary between north and south stocks may require revision and a potential population structure might be present within the North Atlantic (Braun et al. (2019) and references cited therein). The ICCAT swordfish biology program is a collaborative project between institutes from 15 ICCAT Contracting Parties (CPCs) and its goal is to address life history uncertainties important in the ICCAT swordfish assessments and MSE. In 2022 the program entered its fifth year, and it is now focused on filling spatial-temporal gaps and analyzing samples for age and growth, reproduction, and stock differentiation (SCRS 2022).
Image: NOAA Fisheries