Main Menu
Join Undercurrent on Facebook

The Private, Exclusive Guide for Serious Divers Since 1975 | |
For Divers since 1975
The Private, Exclusive Guide for Serious Divers Since 1975
"Best of the Web: scuba tips no other
source dares to publish" -- Forbes
October 2011    Download the Entire Issue (PDF) Available to the Public Vol. 37, No. 10   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
What's this?

Have Lionfish Met Their Match?

from the October, 2011 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

Initially all but ignored by native predators, the lionfish, an Asian native, may have met its match in the eastern U.S. and Caribbean waters it has been terrorizing. An international research team from the University of Queensland and the American Museum of Natural History reports in the scientific journal PLoS ONE that lionfish densities are amazingly low in the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park in the Bahamas, apparently because the invasive fish has become a favored lunch of the native grouper.

The reefs there have some of the Caribbean's most diverse marine reserves and, as a result of a 20-year fishing ban in the park's waters, huge groupers exist there at high densities. "Grouper numbers [there]are among the highest in the Caribbean, and we believe that groupers are eating enough lionfish to limit their invasion on these reefs," said research team leader Peter Mumby.

Although previous studies have found lionfish in the stomachs of groupers, Professor Mumby said it was exciting to discover that Caribbean groupers are able to control their numbers, but he adds a cautionary note. "Years of overfishing means that densities of large grouper, like the Nassau grouper, are low throughout most of the Caribbean. If we want groupers to help us control the lionfish invasion, we'll have to develop a taste for lionfish instead of grouper and drastically reduce the fishing of this species."

And that, fellow divers, is one more reason not to order grouper on your next Caribbean vacation.

I want to get all the stories! Tell me how I can become an Undercurrent Online Member and get online access to all the articles of Undercurrent as well as thousands of first hand reports on dive operations world-wide

Find in  

| Home | Online Members Area | My Account | Login | Join |
| Travel Index | Dive Resort & Liveaboard Reviews | Featured Reports | Recent Issues | Back Issues |
| Dive Gear Index | Health/Safety Index | Environment & Misc. Index | Seasonal Planner | Blogs | Free Articles | Book Picks | News |
| Special Offers | RSS | FAQ | About Us | Contact Us | Links |

Copyright © 1996-2024 Undercurrent (
3020 Bridgeway, Ste 102, Sausalito, Ca 94965
All rights reserved.