Yellowfin Tuna Size: The Ultimate Guide

yellowfin tuna size

The yellowfin tuna is a species of tuna that can be found in the pelagic waters of tropical and subtropical oceans around the world.

These torpedo-shaped fish have metallic blue backs, yellow sides, and a silver underbelly. They are incredibly powerful and are capable of swimming at speeds of up to 50mph.

Today we’re going to take a closer look at the yellowfin tuna size and find out just how big they really are.

In a nutshell, yellowfin tuna are among the larger species of tuna that typically reach anywhere between 1.1 and 2.2 meters, often weighing around 180kg.

How Big Are Yellowfin Tuna?

Yellowfin tuna are among the largest species of tuna, they can reach over 6 feet in length (2.1m) and weigh up to 400 pounds.

They can be easily identified from other species due to their long dorsal and anal fins that are bright yellow and give this fish its name.

Mature yellowfin tuna can have incredibly long fins, sometimes reaching as far back as their tails. These fins can look like scimitars.

They have a relatively short life span of only 6 – 7 years and are able to reproduce when they reach the age of 2.

They spawn throughout the year in tropical waters and seasonally at higher altitudes.

What Is The Largest Yellowfin Tuna Recorded?

Reported sizes of yellowfin tuna have ranged as high as 2.4m (7ft 10in) in length and 200kg (440 lbs) in weight.

According to the IGFA (International Game Fishing Association), the world record for the biggest yellowfin tuna ever caught using a Rod & Reel belongs to Guy Yacom.

This fish was caught in Mexico on September 18th, 2012, and weighed an impressive 427 pounds.

This yellowfin tuna was exceptionally large and was weighed a few hours after being caught using a certified scale with over 20 witnesses on the dock at Marina Casa de Campo.

There is no doubt that this fish was gigantic for the species, much larger than the average-sized bluefin tuna.

What Is The Average Size Tuna?

There are 15 different species of tuna that range in size from the small Skipjack tuna which is only around 32 inches in length and 7-22 pounds to the Bluefin tuna which can be 13 feet in length and weigh 2,000 pounds.

Tuna SpeciesMaximum LengthCommon LengthMaximum Weight
Albacore Tuna1.4m (4.6ft)1.0m (3.3ft)60.3kg (133lbs)
Southern Bluefin Tuna2.45m (8.0ft)1.6m (5.2ft)260kg (570lbs)
Bigeye Tuna2.5m (8.2ft) 1.8m (5.9ft)210kg (460lbs)
Pacific Bluefin Tuna3.0m (9.8ft)2.0m (6.6ft)450kg (990lbs)
Atlantic Bluefin Tuna4.6m (15ft)2.0m (6.6ft)684kg (1508lbs)
Blackfin Tuna1.1m (3.6ft)0.7m (2.3ft)22.4kg (49lbs)
Longtail Tuna1.45m (4.8ft)0.7m (2.3ft)35.9kg (79lbs)
Yellowfin Tuna2.4m (7.9ft) 1.5m (4.9ft) 200kg (440lbs)

As you can see the average size of different species of tuna varies quite a lot, with the Atlantic Bluefin tuna being the largest of them all.

The Atlantic Bluefin tuna is one of the most prized fish in the world, on the open market, a 600-pound fish might sell for as much as $10,000.

The price is so high because it’s rare to find such a fish so large, and the larger the tuna the more expensive it is going to be.

How Much Is Yellowfin Tuna Worth?

The tuna fishing market is booming, with the fish being a popular dish all around the globe, and one that doesn’t come cheap.

Size matters when it comes to the price of fish, the bigger the catch the more money the fish will bring in at the market.

On average, the price of yellowfin tuna is currently around $2.30/kg, making it much less than the more premium bluefin tuna.

High-quality yellowfin tuna will cost slightly more, with some prized for sushi selling for as high as $6 – $7 per pound of fish.

Yellowfin Tuna Size vs Bluefin Tuna Size

Bluefin tuna grow significantly larger than their yellowfin cousins. Atlantic bluefins can reach a whopping 1500lbs whereas yellowfin tuna top out at around 440lbs.

Bluefin tuna have an appetite that is insatiable and a wide-ranging diet, they consume pretty much anything they come into contact with and therefore keep on growing.

They feed on smaller fish, squid, crustaceans, and a range of other sea creatures, their incredible appetite is the reason why they grow to an astonishing size.

With that said, the largest bluefin tunas are becoming incredibly rare, with overfishing being a real problem for the species.

Bluefin tuna are often caught and sold long before they can reach their maximum size, so when a large bluefin is caught it can fetch a hefty price on the market.

Yellowfin tuna have a piscivorous diet and primarily feed on other fish and smaller prey. They too have an incredible appetite which allows them to reach their impressive size.

However, much like the bluefin tuna they are also overfished due to their price and are similarly caught before they can reach full size.

Both yellowfin and bluefin tuna are near the top of the food chain and they both have few natural predators.

They are preyed on by sharks, billfish, false killer whales, and larger tuna, but only the largest of predators can eat a fully-grown yellowfin tuna.

Final Thoughts

The yellowfin tuna size is impressive, but it’s not quite as big as the more prized bluefin which can grow to over double the size of yellowfin.

Both of these fish have incredible appetites and are near the top of the food chain, feeding on smaller fish and other crustaceans.

This allows them to grow incredibly large, but because of this and the money that can bring in at markets, they are overfished.

These large, powerful fish can swim at speeds of up to 50mph and are some of the strongest fish in our oceans.

They are large, powerful fish that have plenty of meat on them, but sadly this is why their numbers are declining rapidly.

Hopefully, you’ve enjoyed this post about the size of yellowfin tuna and you have learned something new today about this amazing fish.