Blue Marlin

COMMON NAME: Blue Marlin

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Makaira nigricans

TYPE: Fish

DIET: Carnivore


AVERAGE LIFE SPAN: 27 years (females); 18 years (males)

SIZE: Up to 14 feet

WEIGHT: Up to 1,985 pounds


White Marlin

Species name: Tetrapturus albidus (Poey 1860)
Synonyms for use: Kajikia albida (Poey, 1860)
ICCAT species code: WHM
ICCAT names: White needle (Spanish), Makaire Blanc (French), White Marlin (English)

Nakamura (1985) classified the white needle as follows:

  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Subphylum: Vertebrata
  • Superclass: Gnathostomata
  • Class: Osteichthyes
  • Subclass: Actinopterygii
  • Order: Perciformes
  • Suborder: Xiphioidei
  • Family: Istiophoridae

Mahi-Mahi (Dorado) – Punta Cana Fishing Charters

Dolphins are not dolphins. Unlike mammals, dolphins have fins. The dolphinfish most likely got its confusing common name when it was previously classified as a genus of dolphins. It also has a melon-shaped head, just like a real dolphin. In modern classification systems, fish belong to the genus Coryphaena.

When a restaurant says “dolphin” on the menu, it refers to dolphin fish, not mammals. Some restaurants use the alternative names mahi-mahi and pompano to avoid confusion.

Fast Facts: Dolphin Fish

  • Scientific NameCoryphaena hippurus (common dolphin fish); Coryphaena equiselis (pompano dolphin fish)
  • Other Names: Dolphinfish, dolphin, mahi-mahi, dorado, pompano
  • Distinguishing Features: Brilliantly colored fish with single dorsal fin spanning the length of the body; males have protruding foreheads
  • Average Size: 1 meter in length and up to 40 kilograms (88 lb) weight
  • Diet: Carnivorous
  • Life Span: Up to 5 years, but usually less than 2 years
  • Habitat: Temperate, subtropical, and tropical oceans worldwide
  • Conservation Status: Least Concern
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Actinopterygii
  • Order: Perciformes
  • Family: Coryphaenidae
  • Fun Fact: The dolphin fish is a very fast swimmer, reaching speeds of nearly 60 mph.


Pompano dolphins are sometimes confused with young common dolphins or mahi mahi due to their small size, reaching up to 127 cm (50 in). Pomfret is light blue-green with silver-gold sides. When the fish dies, the color fades to a dull gray-green color. A typical mahi mahi is 1 meter long and weighs 7–13 kg (15–29 lb), with catches exceeding 18 kg (40 lb). These fish have vibrant shades of blue, green and gold. The pectoral fins are iridescent blue, the back is green and blue, and the sides are silvery gold. Some people train red dots. When it comes out of the water, the fish is golden brown (hence the name Dorado). After death, the color changes to yellow-gray.
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