Lionfish (Pterois volitans and Pterois miles) are invasive in the Caribbean. Their natural habitat is the Indo-Pacific, where they have natural predators such as eels, grouper, and triggerfish. In their invasive range, Lionfish have no natural predators and their population has rapidly expanded since first being sighted off the coast of Florida in 1985. Today, their invasive range stretches from as far north as Massachusetts, throughout the Caribbean to the north of Brazil. In some areas, as many as 300 Lionfish per hectare have been recorded.
Lionfish are armed with 18 venomous spines distributed throughout their dorsal, pectoral, and anal fins, capable of delivering a painful, but treatable sting, relieved by immersing the affected area in hot water.
Lionfish are voracious eaters. Dining on small reef fish and crustaceans, they are known as a gape-limited predator, meaning they will eat anything that fits within the circumference of their mouth. Capable of eating prey up to 2/3 their body size, a Lionfishes stomach will expand up to 30 times its empty volume. This invasive population poses a serious threat to small and juvenile reef creatures across the Caribbean. The non-specific nature of their feeding habits means they are directly impacting on both environmentally and commercially important fish and crustacean species.
• PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or higher
• 15 years old
• Logged at least 30 dives
What you will learn:
• Everything you ever wanted to know about Lionfish and more
• Proper Spearing & Netting Techniques
• Cleaning & Preparing Lionfish for Consumption
• How to prepare Lionfish ceviche
Materials: US$ 15
Spear: US$ 50