Bluefin spawn between Japan and the Philippines in the spring and summer and migrate across the Pacific in their first or second year of life, the journey taking seven months or less.
These fast-swimming fish may grow to several hundred pounds. Bluefin are rarely encountered south of Cabo San Lucas, Baja California, or north of Point Conception, California. Purse seiners targeting mackerel and sardines occasionally spot the herring-bone pattern of bluefin schools in the Santa Barbara Channel in summer and fall. In the fall of 1988, seiners landed nearly 1,000 large bluefin in a three-month period. Most of the fish were flown to Japan, where this ruby-red-meated fish is prized as sashimi and brings a high price.