VIDEO: The Lonely Life Of A Swordfish

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A favorite among seafood lovers and prized by sportfish anglers, the swordfish gets its name from its long, broad bill, which it uses to slash and stun prey. Generally a solitary creature, swordfish spend much of their time in the dark, swimming as deep as 1,800 feet during the day and cruising the surface at night.

Given their penchant for the depths and darkness, casual swordfish sightings are relatively rare, and a feeding swordfish is something that’s rarely captured on video. Until now. A lucky group of NOAA scientists recently got a treat while conducting a submersible mission at 1,739 feet when a large swordfish swam into frame and began feeding on a prey item. This video shows the eerie but fascinating scene.

North Atlantic swordfish caught with hand lines, hand-operated, pole-and-line rigs and harpoons are listed as a “Best Choice” by Monterey Bay’s Seafood Watch program. Eating swordfish caught by drifting longlines is best avoided.