Tag Reveals Black Marlin’s Travels

A small black marlin tagged and released off Australia’s northeast coast in 1996 was recaptured off Costa Rica—on the other side of the Pacific Ocean. The New South Wales Fisheries Department, the agency that runs the tagging program, said the marlin swam an estimated 8,100 miles, the longest distance for a black marlin to travel before recapture since the program began in 1973. Cairns charter boat owner Beryl Yates caught the marlin while fishing with her husband Neil aboard the Tropic Sea. They estimated the fish weighed 33 pounds. "People often say that tagging the marlin is just as bad as killing them because it stresses them and they sink to the bottom and die," Yates said. "Well, this proves that they don’t." Reports did not say how big the black marlin was when it was caught by a commercial fishing vessel, but it was estimated to have grown to at least 385 pounds in the five years since its release.