All around the southern coast of the United States and in the Caribbean we are facing a very dangerous and highly invasive species otherwise known as the lionfish. This fish is taking over many areas at a pace beyond human belief, but there is more to the story. This specific fish has few predators leaving the issue to us. A lionfish is unmistakable for its large body and bright colors, but also for the mane of poisonous tentacles what is similar to a mane on a lion, hence the name. This fish is very poisonous and highly invasive; it is also capable of producing 30,000 eggs in a week. With no predators for population control, scientists have placed trackers in some of the fish in hopes of coming closer to a solution for the rapid increase in their numbers. For these reasons humans have taken it upon themselves to host what is known as a lionfish round up. An annual event where anyone can join and will receive $2000.00 cash for the most lionfish speared. This is an attempt to reduce the population that’s destroying our natural reefs at a faster rate than we as humans are which is hard to believe because we as humans destroy everything we touch. The lionfish will not only be the death of reef aquatic life but will dominate anything it can fit in its mouth while on their crusade. Some other approaches have also been taken; the campaign slogan reads “Eat Them to Beat Them” which is trying to push lionfish as a delicacy on many restaurants menus. This hasn’t caught on too much, but in some regions it has. The Caribbean’s were the first to see this and the phenomena is spreading rapidly.
So is this the answer to a fish that will have destroyed reef life in a 30-40 year span? Or will the terror continue for this beautiful creature with very upsetting cons. We can only wait to see if our efforts will make a dent in this outbreak.
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