Lionfish threaten the Caribbean

Lionfish are not native to the Caribbean but for some time now they have been spotted in ever increasing numbers is the waters of the Caribbean.

The lionfish is a very poisonous fish with no predators – the poison, a neurotoxin is in venomous dorsal spines which they use for defence if they feel threatened.

Attacks on humans is very rare and not usually fatal, but the sting is very painful and lasts for hours.

The concern about their increasing numbers is because of their very voracious appetite and they eat everything and have the capacity to reduce the number of juvenile fishes on reef areas which will impact the ecosystem.

Further, by consuming populations of such fish as grouper, they may well have an economic impact on the fishing industry.  The impact on tourism has also to be taken into account as the increase in numbers will certainly increase the possibility of injuries to divers.

Robby Thigpen from South Caroline in the USA is producing an E-book to help educate people on the lionfish threat, and if you would like to contribute any photographs, video or other information, you can make contact with him via his Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/#!/robby.thigpen

There is also a short video on Facebook produced by the Roatan Marine Park which you can view here in English http://www.facebook.com/search.php?q=Roatan+Marine+Park&init=quick&tas=0.09776575211435556&search_first_focus=1299091734544#!/video/video.php?v=10150301852365596

Or, here in Spanish http://www.facebook.com/search.php?q=Roatan+Marine+Park&init=quick&tas=0.09776575211435556&search_first_focus=1299091734544#!/video/video.php?v=487500695118

Even if you do not have a Facebook account, you should be able to view them.