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The Lionfish Tamer (not what you think)

By Leonard Ho - Posted Sep 23, 2011 07:00 AM
The Lionfish Tamer is a mini-speargun designed to kill invasive Lionfish in the Atlantic. If you're diving in Florida or the Caribbean and want to do your part to help, consider purchasing this affordable, portable tool.

As most Advanced Aquarist regular readers know, the Indo-Pacific Lionfish are growing out of control in the Atlantic, wreaking havoc on ecosystems up and down the Eastern American coastline.  Many ideas have spawned (no pun intended) to deal with this bio-invasion such "Lionfish Derby" contests where divers compete to remove as many Lionfish as they can.

The Lionfish Tamer is a $35 mini-speargun designed to help divers in this pursuit.  Spearguns are highly effective because Lionfish in the Atlantic have developed no fear of predators.  This is because top predators (namely large groupers and snappers) are over-fished, and remaining predators still do not seem to know what to make of this exotic foreign species.  Therefore, Lionfish show no fear of fish nor humans, making it easy to approach and shoot them point blank.

An important reminder to both saltwater and freshwater aquarists: Never dispose of aquarium livestock, water, or substrate in local waters. Your seemingly insignificant actions can lead to catastrophic effects on native ecosystems (e.g. Atlantic Lionfish invasion, Caulerpa algae).

Here is a video of The Lionfish Tamer in action.  The video is not for the squeamish and definitely not for  Lionfish lovers!  It's sad to see these beautiful animals killed, but it is a necessary evil in order to save entire ecosystems from this invasive species.

Author: Leonard Ho
Location: Southern California

I'm a passionate aquarist of over 30 years, a coral reef lover, and the blog editor for Advanced Aquarist. While aquarium gadgets interest me, it's really livestock (especially fish), artistry of aquariums, and "method behind the madness" processes that captivate my attention.

Website: http://www.advancedaquarist.com.

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