Page 24 - Life of a Swordfish
ISSUE : Issue 4
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1973/5/1
LIFE OF SWORDFISH, CONTINUED it, not a jsound nor a kick out of him. And you come up solid and you can't move him so you know he's dead. Up to their eyes." The swordfish is a solitary creature. It does not school, and it is considered rare to find two close together. It is pelagic, which means it lives in the open seas; and it is a warm-water fish, seeking temperatures of 60 degrees fahrenheit. They are found throughout the tropical and temperate Atlantic; in the Mediterranean; around New Zealand, Hawaii and Japan; and in the South Pacific north to California. In the western Atlantic, it ranges from Jamaica, Cuba and the Bermudas, to Cape Breton Is? land, entering into the Gulf of St. Lawrence and upon the Grand Banks. They are generally found north only in the warmer months, and it is thought that it is only the largest swordfish that come this far. One theory of swordfish movement is that they migrate from deep water toward the continental shelf in summer, returning to deep water in the fall. Some believe they migrate to the north and east along the edge of the continental shelf during the summer and return south and west in the autumn. Capt. V, Harpell of Louisburg struck a swordfish on June 28, 1958, on the southeast part of Georges Bank. The dart broke, part of it remaining in the fish which escaped. On July 20, Capt. T. Wilcox of Glace Bay caught a swordfish on the southeast part of Sable Island Bank. It had a broken dart in it. When the two men later met, they found the two parts of the broken dart fit perfectly • evidence of a migration of 400 miles in 23 days. Our thanks to Jack Ingraham and Melvin Frickert, Neil's Harbour; Bob Fitzgerald of Dingwall and Percy Dixon, Effie's Brook • all swordfishermen. Our cover photograph is of Percy Dixon through a hoop on the spar. In fine weather the boat would be steered from up here. The second hoop is for another man to also watch for swordfish. Thanks to Ken McKay, Marine Biologist, Xavier, for help in researching a life history of swordfish; and especially our thanks to S. N. Tibbo, St. Andrews Biological Station, N, B., who supplied a number of photographs and gave us access to published reports of his researches. The photograph on page 1 is of the sticker. Jack Strickland, on a calm day • "not a hair of wind" • just as he was striking a 565 pound swordfish. Mr. Ingraham said they took three that day and one the next morning. It was the last of the season, about 1935 or 1936. Cape Breton's MAGAZINE SKIR DHU CAPE BRETON NOVA SCOTIA Edited & Published by Ronald Capian MAY 1973 Our thanks to Barry Dixon, Effie's Brook, for considerable help with research and photography for this issue; and to Ken Carmichael and Dave Merchant for their atten-. tion in processing photographs; to John A. MacPherson, Sydney, for his careful tran? scription of Joe MacNeil's Gaelic story; and to Ther'se Bourgeoise, Cheticamp, for help with the French stories. The cover photograph of the Cheticamp River Valley and the photograph of Meat Cove, are both by Dalton Muir and were supplied courtesy of the National and Historic Parks Branch. Subscriptions to Cape Breton's Magazine are $4.50 for 6 issues anywhere in the world. Bonnell Furniture Limited . SYDNEY AND GLACE BAY, N. S. 50 Years Serving Cape Bretoners with Fine Furniture and Appliances Cape Breton's Magazine/24 Now 206 Years Old ROBIN, JONES & WHITMAN, LIMITED Cheticamp, N.S. 224-2022 Inverness, N. S. 258-2362
Cape Breton's Magazine