The Billfish species

What is a billfish?

It is a common misconception that the Billfish is actually one species of fish on its own like a Tuna fish or a Crappie, but the term Billfish is actually a name given to a group of fish. The two families of fish that make up the group named Billfish are the Istiophoridae and Xiphiidae families.

The fish that actually make up the group called Billfish are the Swordfish, Blue Marlin, Black Marlin, White Marlin, Striped Marlin, Sailfish and Spearfish.

Billfish are easily indentifiable by their elongated nasal bones, hence the name "bill" and their long, strong bodies with large fins on top. These fish are built for endurance and speed and can travel hundreds, if not thousands of miles for food.

The size and weight of Billfish differes greatly due to the different species it includes. Some of the species such as the White Marlin only reach lengths of up to seven and a half feet (2.3 meters) and a maximum weight of around eighty two kilograms while other species like the Swordfish can reach weights in excess of one thousand four hundred and forty kilograms and about fourteen feet 9 inches (4.3 meters).

Out of all the fish in the Billfish group it is only the Swordfish that is harvested greatly for its meat, the other fish (Marlin, Sailfish and Spearfish) are generally not caught comercially, although they have been in some countries across the atlantic.

Overall the group fo fish known as the Billfish are a wonderful mix of different species that hold similarities in their predatory skills and genetic design. 

Daniel Eggertsen
Dan Eggertsen is a fellow saltwater fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on saltwater fishing since 2004.

© 2007 Ask Saltwater Fishing. All rights reserved. Sitemap
Proudly designed by TotalTreasureChest.