This unique looking fish is small with radiant and venomous spikes. The lion fish has been in Bahamian waters with an occasional sighting on a reef here or there in the early 1980’s, to today having become an occupying predator. With no natural enemies, they have made themselves at home, munching their way through our Bahamian grouper, snapper, grunt, crab and conch population.
The rumor is they were released from an aquarium off the Florida Coast and gradually drifted across the Gulf to invade the warm waters of the Bahamas, but it doesn’t matter. However they have gotten here, it appears they are here to stay. Originally speared by locals just to get them off the reef, they have now become a food item on menus around town, with lionfish tacos being a favourite.
If you would like to partake in diminishing the lionfish population in The Bahamas, you can do your patriotic duty by entering the 8th Green Turtle Cay Lionfish Derby happening on June 23rd and 24th! Teams of four can enter in the fishing tournament and hunt for the lionfish during the selected hours of “play”. Once the day is over the lionfish will be brought back to the marina, delicately filleted, and cooked for the participants and their guests. Winners will be selected based on Most Fish, Most Fish in Foreign Boat and Best Lady Angler.
Though these animals gorgeously float along the reefs looking like small underwater dragons, they are dangerous to our ecosystem. You can help the cause, and have a delicious dinner, by entering local tournaments like the one described above. Happy hunting. Our Nassau grouper thanks you.