New! On October 5, 2012, President Obama signed the Billfish Conservation Act into law, effectively banning the importation of all billfish into the continental United States. The signing marks the culmination of a united undertaking by a diverse coalition of angling and conservation organizations working in cooperation with a bipartisan… Read more>>
The US is the largest commercial importer of imperiled billfish species, and the IGFA was in Washington on Tuesday, June 19, 2012 to urge Congress to end the importation of marlin, sailfish, and spearfish.
It is currently illegal to harvest or import Atlantic-caught billfish into the U.S., but fish caught in the Pacific Ocean flood into U.S. markets in substantial numbers, threatening the survival of these fisheries. The Billfish Conservation Act of 2011 (H.R. 2706), introduced into Congress on July 29, would close U.S. commercial markets to Pacific billfish, preventing their sale and importation (excluding Hawaii and Pacific Insular Island Area). Click here for a fact sheet about the Billfish Conservation Act of 2011.
In short, this important bipartisan legislation will help restore billfish populations and improve recreational fishing opportunities while concurrently creating jobs and other economic benefits.
Why Take Marlin off the Menu?
Marlin populations throughout the world are being wiped out by commercial overfishing. Click here to read more about this and other reasons to join the campaign to Take Marlin off the Menu.
Concerned about the health of billfish fisheries, the IGFA and the National Coalition for Marine Conservation joined forces in 2008 to create the Take Marlin off the Menu campaign. In just two short years, the campaign gained the support of such luminaries as Wolfgang Puck and the Wegmans Supermarket chain – as well as the attention of U.S. policymakers. Their support hinged largely on an Economic Analysis of International Billfish Markets which shows that the economic value of the U.S. billfish trade is almost nil in relation to the rest of the U.S. commercial fishing industry.
Your support of the Billfish Conservation Act would close the U.S. to commercial billfish harvest, importation and sale. It would have a negligible impact on the commercial industry in the U.S. while helping increase the abundance of these important apex predators and also the value of the recreational fishery, which brings in billions of dollars annually but has a minimal impact on billfish populations.
Want to do more to protect billfish? You can make a gift to the Take Marlin off the Menu campaign in a few easy steps.