Arguably the most amazing of the ocean’s apex predators, the swordfish — found around the world in tropical and temperate seas — is often seen basking at the surface (especially in the chilly Pacific off Southern California), and at night hunts in the upper reaches of the water column (where it is taken by trolling lures and bait in geographically disparate areas such as New Zealand and Kenya). Yet much of the time, it prowls the extreme depths — black, cold and with limited oxygen — associating during daylight hours with what is known as the deep-scattering layer, typically 1,500 to 1,800 feet down. Here it feeds on squid and other organisms (aided by heaters that keep its large eyes warm and provide visual acuity). In recent years, protection from longliners by the U.S. government has seen a tremendous surge in populations in the Atlantic off the Southeast and in the Gulf of Mexico. Swords are known for their incredible power and endurance on rod and reel. The world-record broadbill, a 1,182-pound monster, came from the waters off Chile in 1953.