Identification & Biology: Ahi refers to two species, bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) and yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacores). In Hawaii, shibi is another name for yellowfin tuna. The Yellowfin gains its name because the soft dorsal and anal fins and finlets are bright yellow in color. The dorsal and anal fins lengthen with age. Yellowfin range from the ocean surface to depths below 100 fathoms. A mature tuna can grow to 6.5 feet and weigh up to 440 pounds.
Range & Habitat: Tropical and subtropical waters worldwide
Market Description: Yellowfin, a staple of the tuna canning industry, most often appears in the market as canned light tuna. It’s also known as ahi when sold fresh and frozen, and is commonly found on sushi menus.
Flavor Profile: very firm texture, medium flavor, distinct finish
Fishing Technique: Long line
Special Note: Can grow up to 300 lbs
Suitable Sub: Big eye tuna
Recommended Preparation: Yellowfin tuna has flesh coloration that varies from pink in smaller fish to deeper red in larger fish. Larger fish typically have a higher fat content than smaller fish, and this is a desirable attribute for raw fish products, as well as for broiling.Yellowfin is also popular in restaurants as the primary protein in an entree; presented in much the same fashion as fine red meat, it is often cooked seared to rare to medium-rare, though it takes on a rich flavor similar to tri-tip when cooked through.
Cool Facts: A 200-pound yellowfin tuna can swim steadily at 23 miles per hour.