AskDefine | Define marlin

Dictionary Definition

marlin n : large long-jawed oceanic sport fishes; related to sailfishes and spearfishes; not completely cold-blooded i.e. able to warm their brains and eyes [syn: spearfish]

User Contributed Dictionary




marlin (plural marlins)
  1. A game fish having a pointed spearlike upper jaw belonging to either of the genera Tetrapturus or Makaira.



Extensive Definition

Marlin, Istiophoridae, also called Spearfish, are a family, of large marine fishes, of which several are popular in big-game fishing. They have an elongated body that in the larger species can exceed 4 m (13 ft) in length, a spear-like snout, and a long rigid dorsal fin, which extends forwards to form a crest. The common name is thought to derive from its notional resemblance to a sailor's marlinspike. Marlin are fast swimmers, occurring in all oceans and hunting small and large fish.
The larger species include the Atlantic blue marlin, Makaira nigricans, which have been reliably recorded in excess of 2 m (7 ft) in length and 120 kg (250 lb) in weight, and the Black marlin, Makaira indica, which have been reliably recorded in excess of 5 m (16 ft) in length and 670 kg (1,470 lb) in weight. Marlins are very fast and can swim 100 m (330 ft) in about 4 seconds (approximately 56 mph). They are popular sporting fish in certain tropical areas and are also commercially important as a food fish.
Marlin are rarely table fare. Most modern sport fishermen release marlin after unhooking. Some marlin that are top record setting fish are taken and weighed on shore. Those records are most often recorded in the IGFA World Record Game Fish books.

Further reading

  • Clover, Charlie. 2004. The End of the Line: How overfishing is changing the world and what we eat. Ebury Press, London. ISBN 0-09-189780-7
marlin in Persian: نیزه‌ماهی
marlin in German: Marline
marlin in Spanish: Istiophoridae
marlin in French: Istiophoridae
marlin in Italian: Marlin
marlin in Lithuanian: Buriažuvinės
marlin in Dutch: Zeilvissen
marlin in Japanese: カジキ
marlin in Polish: Żaglicowate
marlin in Portuguese: Marlim
marlin in Thai: กระโทง
marlin in Chinese: 旗魚
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