Blue Ocean Institute

Cornelia Oedekoven

Species has a combination of problems such as overfishing, high bycatch, and poor management.
Orange Roughy These fish contain levels of mercury or PCBs that may pose a health risk to adults and children.

Orange Roughy are a long-lived, late maturing species with relatively low fecundity (fertility). They can live to be more than 100 years old and don’t mature until they’re in their late 20’s.

After being heavily fished over the last 30 years, abundance is less than 30% of the estimated virgin biomass for most populations. Caught exclusively by deep-sea trawling, habitat damage is substantial in fished areas, including sensitive habitats on seamounts.

Fishery management has closed some areas to bottom trawling; however, slow-growing species like coral will take decades to recover fully. Bycatch of finfish is low to moderate because fisheries target large Orange Roughy aggregations (large groups).

Full species report here.

This fish may have high levels of mercury that could pose a health risk to adults and children.  More info here about mercury in Orange Roughy. Check out our mercury in seafood section.