Controlling Florida’s Lionfish Population
Lionfish are an incredibly beautiful, yet destructive and dangerous, invasive fish now thriving off the Atlantic coast from the Florida Keys up to North Carolina. Originally from the Western Pacific, lionfish were somehow released into the Southern Atlantic and are currently thriving as some estimates purport a population growth of 700% from 2004 to 2008. With no known predators in their new territory, these voracious eaters are feasting on native Floridian fish.
So what has the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) recommended for ridding the South Atlantic coast of this problem? Eat them!
While I cannot personally attest to the taste, I have heard from many people that the lionfish is delicious. But beware: these creatures are extremely dangerous. The spines on both the dorsal and pectoral fins are very poisonous to humans. Make sure you consult an expert or conduct research on how to properly clip the fins and filet the lionfish before you try it (or you may end up in the ER). Reef.org has published a