marlin, common name for open-sea fish related to the sailfish (family Istiophoridae) and prized in sport fishing. The best known is the Atlantic blue marlin, Makaira nigricans, found in the Gulf Stream as far north as Long Island. It may reach 1,000 lb (454 kg) in weight. The upper jaw of the marlin extends into a long spike with which it clubs the small fish on which it feeds. The striped marlin, Kajikia audax, of the Pacific reaches a weight of 300 to 400 lb (135–180 kg); the paler white marlin, K. albida, of the Atlantic rarely exceeds 100 lb (45 kg). Marlins are classified in the phylum Chordata, subphylum Vertebrata, class Actinopterygii, order Perciformes, family Istiophoridae.
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