Tusk, Brosme brosme

IUCN Red List assessment: Least Concern

Watercolour pencil and paint on card

Artist: Rebecca Jeffree

Tusk is a solitary, slow-growing deep sea fish related to cod and haddock which can live up to 20 years. It’s found in depths between 20 and 1000m but  typically caught between 200 and 500m by long line fishing. It’s less vulnerable to over-exploitation than other deep water species, but there is little evidence to tell us whether the tusk fishery is sustainable and Marine Conservation Society (MSC) gives this fish a 3, amber, sustainability rating. MSC says, “Deep sea ecosystems are highly vulnerable and have a very low resilience, thus the impacts of any large scale removal of fish or abrasion of the seabed caused by fishing gear are likely to be severely detrimental with recovery slow, especially with regard to coldwater corals.”

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