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Invasive Species Spearfishing & Science Discuss invasive exotic species such as lionfish, carp, snakehead, etc. including news, spearfishing and scientific research in any geographical region.

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Old 09-25-2013, 01:32 PM   #61
UaVaj
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

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Originally Posted by jfjf View Post
Those species were existing in their natural ecological niche. Lionfish are exotics and may (seem to) have the ability to "over populate" large areas in a very short time.

I'm not sure how you could establish a viable fishery at depths of over 500 feet for them. I view the deepwater populations as an almost endless reservoir of eggs and juveniles to re-colonize the shallower reefs.
the same could be said to all those other species. yet those other species are being fished out (per the science/data, unless such science/data is pure bs and those other species are actually flourishing in deep to re-colonize the shallow).

lastly - find a commercial niche for these critters and they too will decimate. humans have ways of emptying oceans.
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Old 09-26-2013, 08:39 AM   #62
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

A few things...

First of all, killing lionfish is NOT a favor for the government. It's a favor for yourself...

That being said, I don't believe that fishermen\divers could ever take care of the lionfish problem. South Florida is the most overfished place I have ever dove and people are sticking them down there as fast as possible.

My back yard is South Carolina, and I can't remember the last time I dove and DIDN'T see a lionfish. Factor in that they also inhabit deeper waters (i.e. the continental shelf) and most divers are not diving that deep. If they are diving that deep, they are looking for giant gags and hogfish. They aren't going to waste their time at 170' poking lionfish. Bottom line, I applaud the effort of people trying to eradicate them, but I doubt that it's a battle we can win. That DOES work under the assumption that they can spawn up and down the coast. If they can only spawn in certain areas, then maybe focusing there could help. Otherwise, you are just pissing on an inferno.

For those that think putting a bounty on them will "overfish" them, you are kidding yourselves. Let's not forget that most of the "overfishing" happened in the 70's with bottom trawlers and through the 80's and early 90's with bottom long lining. It wasn't caused by the hook and line fishermen that you see today. Sure, they might keep it trimmed down now that the population is already lower, but it would be hard for fishermen to knock out a virgin stock. At least not north of Jupiter (maybe St Lucie). I use Jupiter to St Lucie because that is where the shelf pulls in really close to land and funnels all of the fish within 2 miles of highly populated areas. Once you get up into Georgia and the Carolinas, there are WAY more hiding places for fish than there are fishermen...

Also, I am not convinced that lionfish will wipe everything else out. Sure they have been proven to eat 60% of the contents of a fish tank, but that is in a fish tank. Where I have observed them, they are usually snuggled up pretty tightly to the rock like a hind. I would worry about them wiping out certain species that need the same habitats like rock hinds, eels, hakes, etc., but not things like grouper and snapper and things that live above the reef.

I think that if you wanted to wipe out lionfish, you would have to make some sort of traps that entangle them. Not sure what it would look like, but maybe someone smarter than me could invent a lionfish trap that would just sit on the ocean floor and kill them eternally.
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Old 10-09-2013, 11:33 AM   #63
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

I fish/dive out of the Carolinas as well. I just gutted over 60 lionfish the other day and most of them had baby vermillion snapper in their stomachs, the others had small cigar minnows(round eyed scad) and baby tomtates. These fish were harvested in not that deep of water.

I wish there was a market for these things because they are very good to eat. Like others have said before; we will never totally exterminate these terrible critters and they are EVERYWHERE! I haven't made a dive with out seeing at least 30 lionfish and I am not looking for them most of the time.

I also got poked pretty bad in my pinkie finger at 120ft by a big guy(3.5lb gutted weight). I got hit putting him into a lionfish hotel made by a-plus marine, it is not completely poke proof but a very great product. I have been poked multiple times before but this time was really really bad. Finger swelled so much my skin ripped open and became a big open wound. Lots and lots of pain for more than an hour, more than the usual hour of pain.

Hope this does not happen to others but I do wish people take time to kill these things because they are very good to eat, like a black seabass filet( pearl white, sweet, flaky meat). With the commercial closure of triggerfish those things are everywhere too. They area like packs of piranhas tearing up stringers of grouper and hogfish. Someone needs to teach the triggers to eat the lionfish haha.
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Old 10-14-2013, 03:30 PM   #64
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

mjmoore, there are a couple of restaurants down in Charleston that will buy local lions if you are looking for a market for them. That's interesting to know about the baby vermilion though.
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Old 12-03-2013, 07:27 PM   #65
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

Quote:
Originally Posted by skinneej View Post
A few things...

First of all, killing lionfish is NOT a favor for the government. It's a favor for yourself...

That being said, I don't believe that fishermen\divers could ever take care of the lionfish problem. South Florida is the most overfished place I have ever dove and people are sticking them down there as fast as possible.

My back yard is South Carolina, and I can't remember the last time I dove and DIDN'T see a lionfish. Factor in that they also inhabit deeper waters (i.e. the continental shelf) and most divers are not diving that deep. If they are diving that deep, they are looking for giant gags and hogfish. They aren't going to waste their time at 170' poking lionfish. Bottom line, I applaud the effort of people trying to eradicate them, but I doubt that it's a battle we can win. That DOES work under the assumption that they can spawn up and down the coast. If they can only spawn in certain areas, then maybe focusing there could help. Otherwise, you are just pissing on an inferno.

For those that think putting a bounty on them will "overfish" them, you are kidding yourselves. Let's not forget that most of the "overfishing" happened in the 70's with bottom trawlers and through the 80's and early 90's with bottom long lining. It wasn't caused by the hook and line fishermen that you see today. Sure, they might keep it trimmed down now that the population is already lower, but it would be hard for fishermen to knock out a virgin stock. At least not north of Jupiter (maybe St Lucie). I use Jupiter to St Lucie because that is where the shelf pulls in really close to land and funnels all of the fish within 2 miles of highly populated areas. Once you get up into Georgia and the Carolinas, there are WAY more hiding places for fish than there are fishermen...

Also, I am not convinced that lionfish will wipe everything else out. Sure they have been proven to eat 60% of the contents of a fish tank, but that is in a fish tank. Where I have observed them, they are usually snuggled up pretty tightly to the rock like a hind. I would worry about them wiping out certain species that need the same habitats like rock hinds, eels, hakes, etc., but not things like grouper and snapper and things that live above the reef.

I think that if you wanted to wipe out lionfish, you would have to make some sort of traps that entangle them. Not sure what it would look like, but maybe someone smarter than me could invent a lionfish trap that would just sit on the ocean floor and kill them eternally.

The lionfish is hunting at night mostly, and they are wandering far away from their rocks when they do...
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Old 02-09-2014, 01:16 PM   #66
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

OP is right. A bounty on lionfish would create opportunity for corruption, like people breeding them on purpose. So the best solution does seem to be making spearfishing open season all year round. That would give spearos an incentive to keep their hunting spots clear of lionfish.
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Old 02-15-2014, 05:02 PM   #67
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

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Originally Posted by mjmoore83 View Post
I fish/dive out of the Carolinas as well. I just gutted over 60 lionfish the other day and most of them had baby vermillion snapper in their stomachs, the others had small cigar minnows(round eyed scad) and baby tomtates. These fish were harvested in not that deep of water.

I wish there was a market for these things because they are very good to eat. Like others have said before; we will never totally exterminate these terrible critters and they are EVERYWHERE! I haven't made a dive with out seeing at least 30 lionfish and I am not looking for them most of the time.

I also got poked pretty bad in my pinkie finger at 120ft by a big guy(3.5lb gutted weight). I got hit putting him into a lionfish hotel made by a-plus marine, it is not completely poke proof but a very great product. I have been poked multiple times before but this time was really really bad. Finger swelled so much my skin ripped open and became a big open wound. Lots and lots of pain for more than an hour, more than the usual hour of pain.

Hope this does not happen to others but I do wish people take time to kill these things because they are very good to eat, like a black seabass filet( pearl white, sweet, flaky meat). With the commercial closure of triggerfish those things are everywhere too. They area like packs of piranhas tearing up stringers of grouper and hogfish. Someone needs to teach the triggers to eat the lionfish haha.
MJ, just wondering where in the Carolinas are you hitting the Lionfish? How deep are they? Im relatively new to spearfishing and recently getting back into diving. I currently live pretty close to South Padre in TX, but have some property and family near Charlotte that we get back to pretty often. I hope to get some more dive time here as well, but work keeps screwing up all of my fun.
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Old 02-26-2014, 10:20 PM   #68
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

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The lionfish is hunting at night mostly, and they are wandering far away from their rocks when they do...
This is not true. When the current is not moving they hole up or when the water is really dirty. If the current is running hard they leave the rocks and line up shoulder to shoulder facing into the current and feed on the edge of the reef. I have watched them eat during the middle of they day and the ones that I do harvest and gut have fresh fish in their stomach.

damnedifido- In the Carolinas during the summer time I see them as shallow as 90ft. In the winter they seem to move offshore to 110 at the shallowest. There are tons of lions 140ft and deeper. Where I hit them at? In the head with a small polespear and then shove them in a lion hotel where they wait their demise.
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Old 03-11-2014, 09:47 AM   #69
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

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Tony, I really have been wanting to state my opinion for several months now on the Lionfish subject, but after reading your post today, I finally got the lead out of my ass.

Below is what I wrote to my reader group. Like it or not, it's the way I feel.

In late December of 2010 I saw my first Lionfish at 110' on GI 76, I think I may have been the first one to ever see one on a rig, probably because no one in their right mind would have been out there at that time of the year. During the 2011 summer several of us have seen quite a few on different platforms and we even had a competition for who could get the most, with a $100.00 prize. We generated so much interest that only one Lionfish was brought in, and, by the guy that put up the $100.00.

Well last week, I dove Dec. 28-29-30, and I have to say, I saw an explosion of these pesky little critters all over the rigs I dove on both sides of the river. The first one I saw was in West Delta's dirty water, on my first dive of the 3 day marathon. I was running my had down the pipe so I wouldn't lose the rig and at about 40' I almost put my hand on one that was verticle on the corner rig leg of all places. Many rigs during those 3 days had decks with 10 or more Lionfish on them.

In Florida there is some sentiment that the divers will volunteer to help with population reduction.

Personally, I don't see myself doing any volunteer work for a Government Agency that has been screwing me for the past 25+ years. And whether most of you do it maliciously or involuntarily, you will follow the same path as myself.

Scenario; Red Snapper season is CLOSED - Gag Grouper is CLOSED - Amberjack is CLOSED, Yeah!!! let's go put 150 gallons of fuel in the boat at over $3.00 a gallon, run offshore for 25+mi. in rough seas all to swim down 100-150' and risk being stung by a Lionfish so we can look good in the eyes of a Federal Agency that has thumbed their noses at us for all those years.

It's already been proven, working within the system DOES NOT work, that's why Myself and several other made the trek to Washington DC to tell our Congressmen and Senators that the people mismanaging our fisheries need to be removed.

Look at the bright side, this blows a hole right in the Environmental Defense Plan of selling all fishing rights to one monopoly and only the highest bidders are able to eat fish. I can't wait until Shrimp Trawlers get a couple hundred pounds of Lionfish in their trawls. This is our Katrina, our BP, and the clever people managed to turn that into oportunity.

I say we give the Gulf Council, NMFS, NOAA or whoever our demands.

Simple; as DIVERS, we want open season year round on Red Snapper, Grouper, and Amberjack. We all know those fish aren't in trouble. We also want to be able to collect a bounty on the Lionfish we bring back to the dock, I think $25.00 per Lionfish should be fair, after all, we'll be swimming down over 100' to collect them, risking life and limb.

If the Fedral Agency's really want to regulate a sustainable fishery like they advertise, they should really want to do something about the Lionfish Explosion.

this is my personal opinion, and doesn't reflect that of the LCUDC, Hell Divers or spearfishermen in general, yet!

Louis Rossignol
Rok,

I certainly understand your position. However, it might help to look at this situation a little more selfishly. Lionfish could pose a bigger problem than stinging us here and there.
Studies by Oregon State University have shown that a single lionfish can reduce the population of juvenile fish on a small coral reef by 80% in just 5 weeks. That is insane. And what are those juvenile fish? Certainly some are small wrasses and blennies and things like that. But also shrimp, juvenile grouper and snapper. Now, is a 15" lionfish going to eat a 15lb gag? No, but if the lionfish eats all of the food, the gag will die.
Also there is strong evidence that lionfish preying on all of the parrotfish that eat algae and other fish that eat seaweed can upset the balance leading to reefs being covered in algae and seaweed and/or lead to algal blooms in the water column.
I don't care if the government is asking us to remove them. We should be doing it for our own sake.
Can we really make a difference? 99% of the opinion is "no"
However, further studies by OSU show that we don't have to eradicate them. Their research suggests that knocking the lionfish population on a reef down as much as 25% can allow rapid recovery of the native fish biomass. That means you don't have to kill all of them. Simply removing enough to sustain the native populations will make a difference.

Just a thought....
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Old 03-28-2014, 06:06 PM   #70
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

I shot few lion fish in Panama (caribbean side) and they were really the most delicious fish you could imagine. And they are not that hard to prepare, if you know what you are doing. You could shoot them for that reason. I bet you could collect more meat per hour shooting these fish than any other because they do not flee.
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Old 08-25-2014, 11:48 AM   #71
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Re: Do You Really Feel Like Getting Stung by a Lionfish?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mjmoore83 View Post
I fish/dive out of the Carolinas as well. I just gutted over 60 lionfish the other day and most of them had baby vermillion snapper in their stomachs, the others had small cigar minnows(round eyed scad) and baby tomtates. These fish were harvested in not that deep of water.

I wish there was a market for these things because they are very good to eat. Like others have said before; we will never totally exterminate these terrible critters and they are EVERYWHERE! I haven't made a dive with out seeing at least 30 lionfish and I am not looking for them most of the time.

I also got poked pretty bad in my pinkie finger at 120ft by a big guy(3.5lb gutted weight). I got hit putting him into a lionfish hotel made by a-plus marine, it is not completely poke proof but a very great product. I have been poked multiple times before but this time was really really bad. Finger swelled so much my skin ripped open and became a big open wound. Lots and lots of pain for more than an hour, more than the usual hour of pain.

Hope this does not happen to others but I do wish people take time to kill these things because they are very good to eat, like a black seabass filet( pearl white, sweet, flaky meat). With the commercial closure of triggerfish those things are everywhere too. They area like packs of piranhas tearing up stringers of grouper and hogfish. Someone needs to teach the triggers to eat the lionfish haha.
Just found a good place to buy some gloves. I think these are made for the medical field to prevent needle pokes. I bought a pair of these last year, they seem to work pretty well.

This place is the cheapest I have found.

http://www.katssafety.com/Products/P...Resistant.aspx

Thought I would pass it along.
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