Latin Name

Xiphias gladius

Group Name



Swordfish are a species of tuna with a wide distribution in the Atlantic Ocean. They range from Newfoundland and Labrador to Argentina in the western Atlantic, and from Norway to South Africa in the eastern Atlantic. They are also found in the Mediterranean Sea. Swordfish make extensive migrations as the seasons change, and appear in Canadian waters from spring to fall, mostly in the Grand Banks of Newfoundland and the Scotian Shelf.

Species Description

Swordfish are large, robust fish distinguished by their very long, pointed snout, from which they take their name. Aside from this feature, they generally resemble other species of tuna. They have a thick body that tapers considerably towards their tail fin, which is long and slender. On their back side is a large, curved dorsal fin close to their head, with two thin pectoral fins opposite it. Swordfish are olive brown on their dorsal side and white underneath. They can grow quite large, weighing as much as 100 kilograms.