Swordfish (Xiphias gladius; from Greek ξίφος: sword, and Latin gladius: sword), are large, highly migratory, predatory fish characterized by a long, flat bill. They are a popular sport fish of the billfish category, though elusive. Swordfish are elongated, round-bodied, and lose all teeth and scales by adulthood. These fish are found widely in tropical and temperate parts of the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans.

They are the sole member of their family, Xiphiidae. Females are larger than males, and Pacific swordfish reach a greater size than northwest Atlantic and Mediterranean swordfish. They reach maturity at 4–5 years of age and the maximum age is believed to be at least 9 years. The oldest swordfish found in a recent study were a 16-year-old female and 12-year-old male. Swordfish ages are derived, with difficulty, from annual rings on fin rays rather than otoliths, since their otoliths are small in size.

Swordfish prefer water temperatures between 18 and 22 °C (64 and 72 °F), but have the widest tolerance among billfish, and can be found from 5 to 27 °C (41 to 81 °F). This highly migratory species typically moves towards colder regions to feed during the summer. Swordfish feed daily, most often at night, when they rise to surface and near-surface waters in search of smaller fish. During the day, they commonly occur to depths of 550 m (1,800 ft) and have exceptionally been recorded as deep as 2,878 m (9,442 ft). Adults feed on a wide range of pelagic fish, such as mackerel, barracudinas, silver hake, rockfish, herring, and lanternfishes, but they also take demersal fish, squid, and crustaceans. In the northwestern Atlantic, a survey based on the stomach content of 168 individuals found 82% had eaten squid and 53% had eaten fish, including gadids, scombrids, butterfish, bluefish, and sand lance. Large prey are typically slashed with the sword, while small are swallowed whole.

Species Information

Scientific Name:Xiphias gladius
Ideal Temp:64-72°F (18-22°C)
Technique:Bottom Fishing
Lure Type:Bottom Rig
World Record:536.15 kg (1182 lb 0 oz) Iquique, Chile
Other Names:swordfish, broadbill, broad bill, sword

Latest Swordfish Fishing Reports and Spots

272 lb Swordfish! - 7/28/2015 6:06:31 PM

We caught this 272 lb swordfish today on the SeaHorse! Interested in fishing with us? Give us a call! 305-664-5020 The post 272 lb Swordfish! a (View)

Islamorada sea horse catching Mahi and swordfish - 8/5/2016 6:07:10 PM

if you want to catch a swordfish and if you want to catch Mahi. Now is a great time to catch both. We have been catching Mahi on the way out to (View)

Billy Wells Swordfish Action April & May - 5/19/2016 6:17:39 PM

Captain Billy Wells is no stranger to long days on the Gulf of Mexico and no stranger to the deft art of daytime swordfish action. This spring (View)

Summer on the Wild Bill: Billy Wells & Colin Byrd - 7/17/2016 11:02:49 AM

Capt. Billly Wells and Capt. Colin Byrd are having a great summer on the f/v Wild Bill. This 37ft Freeman has been on the scene of many doubles (View)

Giant Yellowfin Tuna & Swordfish Video – Venice LA - 9/12/2016 10:41:04 PM

Justin Rackley known as Lakeforkguy creates fishing videos on youtube and other social platforms. Lakeforkguy travels to freshwater and saltwat (View)

The Holiday Fishing is the Gift that Keeps on Giving - 12/4/2020 9:01:06 AM

The 2020 holiday season is underway and the legendary Fort Lauderdale offshore fishing action is something that you need to experience. Our Lad (View)

We Are Thankful for Great Fishing…and for YOU - 11/21/2020 10:01:23 PM

The Lady Pamela Sportfishing Fleet is feasting offshore and inshore as the heart of the 2020 holiday season approaches. We’re catching Mahi Mah (View)

Fishing Highlights – June 1 – 15 2019 - 1/15/2019 12:07:22 PM

Billfish have been sighted sunning on the surface and fish species different to our menu of regulars bent rods. Guests released a Swordfish als (View)

NJ Canyon Fishing - 11/6/2020 12:51:06 PM

The 2015 NJ Canyon Fishing Season is right around the corner. Time to book your Overnight Tuna Trips. Call now for the best dates at Yellowfin (View)

The Weather is Great and So is the Offshore Fishing! - 11/5/2020 5:01:32 PM

The Lady Pamela Sportfishing Fleet is in a festive mood as the holiday season approaches. Our clients are catching Mahi Mahi Swordfish Wahoo Ki (View)