About This Fish

Swordfish


The Swordfish (Xiphias gladius) is also known as broadbill which belongs to the family Xiphiidae under order Perciformes of class Actinopterygii. It is found worldwide in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans in tropical, temperate, and sometimes cold waters at depths between 200 and 600 m and temperatures between 5-27 °C. It is a large highly migratory and predatory fish which is characterized by a long flat and sword like bill.



The Swordfish is elongated and a round bodied fish. The swordfish has 2 dorsal fins, of which, one is quite large followed by a smaller one. First dorsal fin has blackish brown membrane. It also has 2 anal fins, of which, the second is much smaller than the first. It has no pelvic fin. The fins are brown to dark brown in color and the rest of the body is blackish-brown on the dorsal side while ventral side is fading to a lighter shade. Dorsal fin contains 38-56 rays while anal fin consists of 16-18 rays. It is an apex predator that feeds on a wide range of pelagic fish such as mackerel, barracuda, silver hake, rockfish, herring and lanternfishes but also takes demersal fish, squid and crustaceans. It is preyed upon by marine mammals such as killer whales while juvenile is eaten by sharks, marlins, sailfish, yellowfin tuna and dolphinfish. The swordfish reaches sexual maturity between 5 and 6 years of age and around 100-150 cm in length. It is a batch spawner which spawns in spring and summer. The female lays 1 million to 29 million eggs each year. The Swordfish reaches up to 4.5 m in length and 650 kg in weight.


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