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Table of Contents

The upper jaw and snout of the swordfish (there is only one species) is greatly prolonged, forming a flat, sharp-edged sword. It has a very high first dorsal fin and a very small second dorsal, both of them soft rayed; a broad lunate tail; two separate anal fins, the second very small; and a strong longitudinal keel on either side of the caudal peduncle. It has no ventral fins, and the adults have neither teeth nor scales. The spearfish family (p. 357) is the only other group represented in the Gulf of Maine fauna which at all resembles the swordfish, but spearfish have ventral fins and minute teeth; their swords are round edged, and either there is one long continuous dorsal fin or, if there are two, the first is several times as long, relatively, as it is in the swordfish.