Snapshot: New State Diving Record

Mark Mayeda and record bluefin tuna
New diving record holder Mark Mayeda

A new ocean diving record was set on June 11, 2015 when Mark Mayeda speared and landed a 178 lb. 1 oz. bluefin tuna (Thunnus orientalis) at the 277 Spot off Southern California, smashing the previous state diving record for this species by 80 lb. 1 oz. The previous official state record, a 98 lb. bluefin tuna speared by Terry Maas while freediving in 1982, stood unbroken for 33 years. Congratulations go out to Mr. Mayeda, our latest state record holder, for his spectacular catch!

With the current warm water regime off the West Coast, more large, warm water pelagic species such as bluefin tuna have been seen not only off the California coastline, but up into Oregon, Washington, and some reports even indicate into Alaskan waters, according to Environmental Scientist Mandy Lewis with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Highly Migratory Species Project.

Spear fishermen—be on the lookout for large starry flounder! The starry flounder state diving record is the last open diving record awaiting its first qualifying fish (minimum weight 8 lb.). For more information about state recreational fishing and diving records, see the CDFW Fishing and Diving Record web page.

post by Mary Patyten, CDFW Research Writer  ♦  CDFW file photo