Fish Fridays…Lion Fish…uggghhh

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Never would we think that the lionfish would come under the category of Caribbean Fish

Common Name: Lion fish

Latin NamePterois Antennata

Location: The lion fish is usually found near coral reefs of tropical Indo-Pacific region but can now be found in the Eastern Coast of America and Caribbean. It is unclear how they have been able to established themselves there but one theory is that aquarium released specimens has started to propagate in the warm waters.

Distinct Features and Information: The lion-fish belongs to the Scorpion fish family.
This brightly colored fish is usually found in coral reefs, especially in shallow waters hovering in caves or near crevices. Lion-fish have venomous fin spines that can produce painful puncture wounds. Fatalities, however, are rare. The fish have elongated dorsal fin spines and enlarged pectoral fins, and each species has a particular pattern of zebra like stripes. A person punctured by one of the sharp spines will immediately feel strong pain. Rapid swelling of the affected body area develops along with the possibility of making movement of limbs very difficult. Lion-fish stings can cause nausea, breathing difficulties, paralysis, convulsions and collapse. Even death may occur in exceptional circumstances. Most people survive in spite of the great pain. The venom in the spines remains active for days, so even discarded spines should be treated with caution. It may take several months for a full recovery and if the sting is left untreated, gangrene may develop. One of the main distinctions between Pterois volitans and all other family members of the Scorpaenidae is that the Pterois volitans has 13 dorsal spines while all the others have 12 or less.

Special Status or Protections: None

Lionfish Juvenile

Lion Fish Intermediate

Lion Fish Adult

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