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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 06-15-2020, 09:30 AM   #1
Tyson Brown
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Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

It's nice to know which spines are venemous on lionfish - don't have to waste time underwater cutting off the others.

Make this sticky?

Photos:

https://drawnbydawn.com/products/lionfish-spines


https://lionfish.co/lionfish-faq/


https://jeb.biologists.org/content/222/6/jeb197905


https://lionfish-hunting.com/lionfish-spines/
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Old 06-15-2020, 09:43 AM   #2
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

Does anyone know if you can still be envenomated (is that the word?) by the cut stub of a spine if you cut them close to the body of the lionfish? Since the venom resides in the spine, it seems like if you cut the spines at an angle, the sharp bone fragments might still puncture your skin if you were unlucky / unwary.

Has anyone ever been stung this way by having their bare leg brush against a strung and snipped lion?
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Old 06-15-2020, 10:03 AM   #3
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

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Does anyone know if you can still be envenomated (is that the word?) by the cut stub of a spine if you cut them close to the body of the lionfish? Since the venom resides in the spine, it seems like if you cut the spines at an angle, the sharp bone fragments might still puncture your skin if you were unlucky / unwary.

Has anyone ever been stung this way by having their bare leg brush against a strung and snipped lion?
Ive been stuck a couple times by live fish. IMO if a spine penetrates your skin you have a great chance of getting "hit." If you have an open would and poison comes in contact with it, you will get "hit" also. As long as poison touches an open wound or a spine penetrates, and venom is expelled, its going to happen.

Ive carried dead ones around my waste while spearing (wearing a wetsuit of course) and never been "venomized." The key is killing the fish so they dont inject you.
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Old 06-15-2020, 10:51 AM   #4
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

I think if the spines are snipped, they are pretty unlikely to poke you. A wetsuit is not going to offer much protection from a spine.

Killing the fish will not prevent you from being stung. I got a pretty good hit from a broken spine that was laying on the deck and then went deep into my heel.

I hate those things!
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Old 06-15-2020, 12:24 PM   #5
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

Thanks guys. Sadly (or fortunately?), this lion produced the largest filets I brought home from my trip this past Friday. I carried it around on the freeshaft for half my dive, waving it from time to time in order to slide it back down to the tip. No stings....

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Old 06-15-2020, 04:07 PM   #6
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

Honestly, I don't recall, but once on ice the venom reduces toxicity and you can get stuck, but no sting.
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Old 06-15-2020, 04:22 PM   #7
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

Thanks! I think one of y'all who shoot lions more often should do a little scientific testing!

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Old 06-15-2020, 09:35 PM   #8
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

Lionfish can DEFINITELY envenomate you if it is dead. If you shoot and stone a lionfish, and then get stuck, you would take the same hit as if it was alive.

Wetsuit offers little protection. I've had their spines go right through my band when carrying them on the end of my shafts in the spare shaft holder. Their spines are as sharp as hypodermic needle.

The venom sacs are at the end of the spines, but a tube carries the venom along the spines to that sac. So after trimming the spines close to the fish, you would be pretty safe. The spine is no longer really as significant of a puncture hazard.

Lionfish venom does denature over time as they ice down. I don't know how long it takes, and choose not to find out. Typically we let them die on the boat, hold them by the mouth and trim off their spines over the side of the boat. Take care to ensure none are left on boat.

If someone is envenomated, HEAT is the only way to go. Even though what took the hit will be swelling, do not apply ice. Heat is what denatures the venom once it hits a human. Just like with a stingray hit. Clean the area with an antiseptic, soak in hot water (as hot as the person can tolerate up to about 105 degrees). Having chemical hot packs handy is a good idea in the first aid kit. Tylenol/Advil/Aleve for pain if necessary. Having Benadryl on hand in the kit is also a good idea. Some people have severe anaphylactic responses to envenomination. Like with a bee sting. So if the person has any difficulty breathing, get some Benadryl in them. But otherwise Heat does the trick.

The area can stay swollen for some time. And dependent on where the person gets stuck, typically it is in the hand, I have had patients with very severe damage from lionfish stings. If the spine gets into a joint capsule or tendon sheath, the venom can destroy the tissue. Surgical intervention and extensive Rehab is possible from a lionfish envenomination. So exercise caution with them.
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Old 06-15-2020, 09:37 PM   #9
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

Great info, thanks!

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Old 06-15-2020, 10:32 PM   #10
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

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Thanks! I think one of y'all who shoot lions more often should do a little scientific testing!

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Testing...huh.. I've learned enough without even trying...

https://youtu.be/P8MaLqb9-rw?t=153
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Old 06-15-2020, 10:37 PM   #11
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

I feel like my 22 years experience as an electrician has prepared me pretty well to avoid touching forbidden articles, like live wires and lionfish spines. So far, so good.

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Old 06-16-2020, 10:33 AM   #12
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Re: Image Showing Which Lionfish Spines are Venemous

Lionfish Do not inject anything. There is a protene on the spines that when you get stuck the sheath slides down and protien gets to sting you. Put hot water on it and it will stop the pain. Never put cold water on it. Stonefish are the same. NO poison. Just pain.
The more you get stung the less it will hurt. I have been stung many times by lion's and once by a stone fish.

Last edited by sealark; 06-16-2020 at 12:47 PM.
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