In this Book

The Billfish Story
summary
The billfish is fixed at the apex of the oceanic food chain. Composed of sailfish, marlin, spearfish, and swordfish, they roam the pelagic waters of the Atlantic and are easily recognized by their long, spear-like beaks. Noted for their speed, size, and acrobatic jumps, billfish have for centuries inspired a broad spectrum of society. Even in antiquity, Aristotle, who assiduously studied the swordfish, named this gladiator of the sea xiphias—the sword.

The Billfish Story tells the saga of this unique group of fish and those who have formed bonds with them—relationships forged by anglers, biologists, charter-boat captains, and conservationists through their pursuit, study, and protection of these species. More than simply reciting important discoveries, Stan Ulanski argues passionately that billfish occupy a position of unique importance in our culture as a nexus linking natural and human history. Ulanski, both a scientist and an angler, brings a rich background to the subject in a multifaceted approach that will enrich not only readers’ appreciation of billfish but the whole of the natural world.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. pp. 1-5
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. 6-7
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  1. List of Illustrations
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-xii
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-4
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  1. CHAPTER 1 The Rise of Billfish
  2. pp. 5-20
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  1. CHAPTER 2 The Interlocking Web of Ocean Life: From Plankton to Billfish
  2. pp. 21-35
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  1. CHAPTER 3 Billfish through the Ages
  2. pp. 36-60
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  1. CHAPTER 4 Anatomy of Tournaments
  2. pp. 61-88
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  1. CHAPTER 5 The Ultimate Billfish: Blue Marlin
  2. pp. 89-110
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  1. CHAPTER 6 Night Stalkers: Swordfish
  2. pp. 111-132
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  1. CHAPTER 7 Billfish Bantamweights: Spearfish, White Marlin, and Sailfish
  2. pp. 133-156
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  1. CHAPTER 8 The Fate of Billfish
  2. pp. 157-182
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 183-192
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 193-196
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