Tagging studies have demonstrated that this fast-swimming species can travel up to70 km/h, is able to cross the Atlantic Ocean within 50 days, and dive to depths of 500-1000 m. The front of its body is covered with a hood of fused shells. Its dorsal area is blue-black in color; its sides are a shiny mother-of-pearl color; its belly is white. Eastern Atlantic bluefin tuna spawn during May-June primarily in three locations within the Mediterranean. They reach sexual maturity at around 4 years of age; it then can measure over 1 meter in length. They undergo feeding migration in the Mediterranean and Atlantic; herring, mackerel, and other schooling fish are important prey species. The bluefin tuna itself is a very delicious and highly sought after food fish, and has economic importance throughout in its range of distribution. A single bluefin tuna can be sold for several hundred USD; the world record set in 2012 for a single tuna is an incredible $736,000 USD − sold at Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo.
Norway was a major fishing nation on the eastern bluefin tuna from 1950 - 1960's, with catches of 2,000 to 15,000 tons during this period. This species was a regular guest in Norwegian waters until the end of the 1970s; however fewer and fewer bluefin tuna now find their way to our shores.