Bluefin Tuna Takes Flight to Chomp Down on Mini Mackerel in Jaw-Dropping Video

by Craig Garrett
Bluefin tuna Thunnus thynnus saltwater fish - stock photo

A viral video featuring a bluefin tuna pulling a serious aerial maneuver to nab a mini mackerel is leaving viewers dropping their jaws. If you’re looking for disturbing images of nature, “Nature is Metal” is the place to go. The Instagram account posts candid, unforgiving footage of wildlife at their most pure, as animals struggle to survive. With over 4 million followers, it’s a real hub for wildlife lovers.

This wild clip of a bluefin tuna is no exception. In the brief clip, we see a serene shot of the ocean during the day. We hear some bars of the iconic The Doors song “The End.” Of course, that song was featured in the 1979 war film, Apocalypse Now. It sets up what is to be a quick end for our first character.

Out of nowhere, a mini mackerel shoots out of the water. Suddenly, a bluefin tuna leaps from the water after the mackerel. The viewer is made aware of a life-and-death chase taking place in the ocean depths moments before. The larger fish opens its maw and closes it down on the mackerel, swallowing it whole. Nature is Metal shared the clip, which has amassed 33,000 likes and dozens of comments.

As always, Nature is Metal captions the clip with hilarious bluntness. “Bluefin tuna follows a mini mackerel into the air and ends the chase.” Followers of the account were flabbergasted by the brief footage. “So glad to see my protein making sure they’re eating their protein,” one user quipped. Many users pointed out that there’s always a bigger fish.

Bluefin tuna is a sought-after fish

Bluefin tuna is a delicacy that is highly sought-after in Japan. It has been known to sell at around $200 per pound. The commercial importance of bluefin tuna has led to severe overfishing, which the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas affirmed in October 2009. Additionally, they found that stocks had declined dramatically by 72% in the Eastern Atlantic and 82% in Western Atlantic over the last 40 years.

To preserve this species, on 16 October 2009 Monaco formally recommended endangered status for Appendix I CITES listing and an international trade ban on bluefin tuna. In early 2010, European officials increased pressure to ban commercial fishing of tunas internationally. It is, however, forbidden to kill the protected fish, which was once on the verge of total extinction. As part of a new Government initiative, anglers are allowed to catch bluefin tuna, tag them for science, and then set them free.

The biggest bluefin on record in Australia weighed around 600 pounds, whereas the all-tackle world record for the species is a 1,496-pound fish caught back in 1979. Bluefin tuna can live up to 30 years old, but on average they survive 15 to 25 years.