White Marlin

The White Marlin is smaller than many other billfishes.

The body is dark blue above and silvery white below, with brown spots on the sides of the white portion.

White Marlin Illustration by Duane Raver, Jr.
Season Open Year-Round

All Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (Atlantic tunas, sharks, swordfish and billfish) not retained must be immediately released to ensure the maximum probability of survival, without removing the fish from the water.

There is an annual U.S. landings limit of 250 Atlantic Blue Marlin, White Marlin, and
Roundscale Spearfish (combined). Landings updates and seasonal closures are posted under “What's New...” at

*Special permit required - All private vessel owners/operators recreationally fishing for and/or retaining regulated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (Atlantic tunas, sharks, swordfish and billfish) for personal use in the Atlantic Ocean must obtain an Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Angling Permit. Further limits and restrictions apply.

Consult or call toll free (888) 872-8862 for specific information and permits.
Size Limit 66 inch minimum (measured from the tip of the lower jaw to the tail fork)
Daily Limit / Person No Limit
Delaware Range Atlantic Ocean
Abundance in Delaware Waters Common
General Habitat and Food Preferences An oceanic species, the White Marlin is primarily a near surface water fish.

These fish are most often solitary in nature.

They feed primarily on sardines, squids, flying fish, and other medium-sized fishes.
Did You Know? It is believed that the bill is sometimes used to stun prey with a swift sideways strike but White Marlin more often overtake the prey by speed.
Common Lures and Baits Most people troll rubber skirted lures or natural baits when fishing for White Marlin.
Typical Sizes Caught White Marlin are commonly caught in the range of 62 to 70 inches in length (45 to 65 pounds).
Citation Minimum Length and Weight Live Release Award
Adult: Any
Youth (age 15 and under): Any

Sport Fishing Tournament Award
Adult: Any
Youth (age 15 and under): Any
Delaware State Record 120 pounds
William Garner Jr.