Definition of garfish in US English:



  • Any of a number of long, slender fish with elongated beaklike jaws containing sharply pointed teeth.

    a freshwater fish (family Lepisosteidae and genus Lepisosteus). Also called gar or garpike

    a marine fish (family Belonidae, in particular the common European Belone belone. Also called needlefish or garpike)

    • ‘Conger to over 50 lb, pollack, bass, rays, sole, plaice, bream, mullet, garfish, wrasse, tope, cod and probably a few others I've forgotten.’
    • ‘When chasing whiting and garfish I like to use small long-shank hooks.’
    • ‘The half-beaks, like the garfish, are capable of sustained gliding above the surface of the water, which accounts for the Thai name, pla kathung heo, meaning water-beetle.’
    • ‘If you've time to spare, a day fishing above the bridge with fly gear picks out some huge garfish which are keen to take any type of streamer fly with silver or white in it.’
    • ‘The garfish are extremely long fish, reaching around a metre in length, yet weighing only three pounds.’
    • ‘On the coast you saltwater fly fishers can expect to catch bass, mullet, garfish, flounders and mackerel.’
    • ‘Mullet, garfish or herring seem to be the preferred bait.’
    • ‘Moray eels, garfish and trumpetfish were roaming and snapping at a plethora of potential prey.’
    • ‘One Saturday lunchtime, garfish, gemfish, jewfish, skate, salmon and tuna are on the list.’
    • ‘There's clear evidence that they are taking a terrible toll on species like king george whiting and garfish.’
    • ‘The back-end is pike-shaped, the front is a cross between a garfish and a crocodile.’
    • ‘You will also catch plenty of mackerel and garfish in summer.’
    • ‘The other species moving around the river near Lismore is garfish.’
    • ‘So in mid-may, we will sail over to the island again and fish for some big garfish.’
    • ‘The cottages have windows in the floors that reveal a rich parade of marine life: bonefish, jacks, garfish and whip morays.’
    • ‘The tank features thousands of herring, mackerel, garfish, and horse mackerel, which are found off the coast of Denmark.’
    • ‘All the headlands such as Towan and Trevose are places to go and wet a line for typical species such as wrasse, mackerel and garfish, but just do be careful and keep an eye out for rogue waves and lively sea conditions.’
    • ‘These are almost identical to UK garfish, but have teeth and are much bigger, and they leap high in the air during the fight.’
    • ‘There are garfish, tailor and bream around the headland whereas off shore the odd snapper or dolphin fish is being picked up.’
    • ‘Leighton Beach has fished well for garfish, herring and yellow-finned whiting and for anglers with limited mobility is not a bad spot to fish.’


Middle English: apparently from Old English gār ‘spear’ + fish.