NICKNAME:Broadbill, Ditch Donkey
COMMON LENGTH: 9 – 10 ft
COMMON WEIGHT:500 – 750 lbs​
MAX LENGTH: 14 – 15 ft
MAX WEIGHT: 1,100 – 1,200 lbs
WORLD RECORD: 1,182 lbs, 1953, Chile


Swordfish are vigorous, powerful fighters. Their bodies are elongated, round-bodied, and lose all teeth and scales by adulthood. Swordfish prefer water temperatures between 64 and 72 °F, but have the widest tolerance among billfish, and can be found from 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).​


Various ways are used to fish for swordfish, but the most common method is deep-drop fishing, since swordfish spend most daylight hours very deep, in the deep scattering layer. The boat is allowed to drift to present a more natural bait. Swordfishing requires strong fishing rods and reels, as swordfish can become quite large, and it is not uncommon to use five pounds or more of weight to get the baits deep enough during the day, up to 1,500 feet is common. Night fishing baits are usually fished much shallower, often less than 90 metres (300 ft). Standard baits are whole mackerel, herring, mullet, bonito, or squid; one can also use live bait. Imitation squids and other imitation fish lures can also be used, and specialized lures made specifically for swordfishing often have battery-powered or glow lights. Even baits are typically presented using glow sticks or specialized deepwater-proof battery operated lights.​


Swordfish is a particularly popular fish for cooking. Since swordfish are large, meat is usually sold as steaks, which are often grilled. Swordfish meat is relatively firm, and can be cooked in ways more fragile types of fish cannot (such as over a grill on skewers).