Likely the most sought-after sport fish in the world, swordfish are also found in many locations. While, it most often lives in tropical and subtropical waters of the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. Swordfish can also be found throughout the Mediterranean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico between Florida and Texas. Revered as powerful fighters, swordfish can be a challenging catch, often known to be over nine feet in length and can weigh more than 1,300 lbs. Here, you will learn a little more about swordfish. Further, gaining insight into the best places in the US to catch this billfish variety.

About Swordfish

As their name implies, swordfish have a long, flattened bill that looks like a sword. Streamlined, these fish can swim at high speeds of over 50 mph. Further, making them one of the fastest predators in the ocean and a favorite among anglers for a fast action bite. Living about nine years, female swordfish can reproduce around the age of four and five. Furthermore, females can produce up to 29 million eggs.  Hence, swordfish prefer to spawn in warm tropical waters, which in turn makes for a heavily populated species.

Of the many available baitfish in the ocean, swordfish feed on a variety of fish and invertebrates. It captures prey by slashing its bill back and forth, working to injure or even kill its prey in the process. Swordfish have developed unique characteristics, including special eye muscles and a heat exchange system, which permits them to swim deep into cold water after prey. Being at the top of the aquatic food chain, swordfish are rarely preyed on by other animals. However, sharks and larger predatory species sometimes feed on young swordfish. 

Where You Can Locate Swordfish


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Nevertheless, swordfish can be found in varying climates including; tropical, temperate, and cold waters of the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans. It is also found in the Gulfstream of the western North Atlantic, extending north into the Grand Banks of Newfoundland. North Atlantic swordfish migrate annually along the eastern seaboard of the United States and Canada for thousands of miles. And even venturing into the eastern Atlantic to Africa and Europe as well.

On the other hand, swordfish burrow through the abyss, but, there are many locations where they can be easily found. Some of the best places recorded for catching swordfish include the Messina Straits in Southern Italy, Mallorca in Spain, and Croatia. Additionally, many locations throughout the US are very popular for catching swordfish. Especially in Florida in locations like Fort Lauderdale, Miami, and the Florida Keys. Further down south into the Caribbean and along the coast of Mexico, there are plenty of places to catch swordfish as well.

Of the many tropical and subtropical locations worldwide that produce swordfish, some of the best places to catch one are easily accessible from here in the United States. These places include Fort Lauderdale and Miami in Florida. Both of these locations are known for the daytime and nighttime fishing of swordfish. Thus, deep waters are only a short ride out from the coast. Although not as populous, swordfish can be found through the Intracoastal Highway from Massachusetts to Texas. With concentrated pockets around Virginia Beach, Virginia; Jupiter Inlet, Florida; Galveston, Texas; and the US Virgin Islands.

Two Places to Catch Swordfish in the United States

flying swordfish

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1. Fort Lauderdale

One of the most popular vacationing and fishing destinations along the Gulf Coast, Fort Lauderdale offers one of the most beloved fishing spots for swordfish. It has become common to hook up during the day, though, swordfish used to be known for feeding at night. Which makes it an elusive catch. Moreover, with their ability to powerfully fight back against your reel and jump out of the water, nabbing one is no easy feat. So much so, that skilled fishermen in the Fort Lauderdale area find more swordfish during the day. Which in turn has helped alleviate some fishing challenges of this species. On an additional note, fishing charters are available to help you in your deep-sea fishing goal of catching the trophy swordfish.

2. Miami, Florida

Similarly, many fishermen around the Miami area have committed to catching swordfish far beyond the nighttime deep-sea fishing regimen.  Miles off the coast, you have plenty of spots to seek your dream subtropical swordfish. Beyond the mainland, you can venture down toward the Florida Keys and other islands south of Miami to enjoy the ventures of the Atlantic.  This is an area that could start a deep-sea fishing trip if you are searching for a trophy-sized swordfish among other game fish. You can head out to many incredible sport-fishing spots from here and make a true fishing vacation of it.

In Closing

Hiding deep below the surface, these vigorous and powerful fighters are both hard to locate and even more difficult to pull to the surface once one is hooked. More so, if you enter any of the locations where the swordfish are known to reside, you should know what habitat to find one in. To seek them out, locate deep canyons, ridges, craters, or areas with pinnacles where they can dwell deep below the surface. With a proper setup, it is only a matter of time before one jumps above the surface of the water. Regarding swordfish hot spots, deep areas with shipwrecks, and other buried objects which protect baitfish will entice this hungry predator.