Invasive SpeciesMarine LifeVideoWildlife

Swimming With A Barracuda As It Devours A Lionfish

This video of a barracuda snagging a lionfish was taken off Glover’s Reef , in Belize. Now, since lionfish are not native to the Atlantic, Caribbean, or the gulf of Mexico, this presents quite  problem as they are an invasive species. Lionfish are native to the Indo-Pacific, but are now established along the southeast coast of the U.S., the Caribbean, and in parts of the Gulf of Mexico.

How did the fish get to the Atlantic? While the exact cause is unknown, it’s likely that humans provided a helping hand. Experts speculate that people have been dumping unwanted lionfish from home aquariums into the Atlantic Ocean for up to 25 years. Since lionfish are not native to Atlantic waters, they have very few predators.

They are carnivores that feed on small crustaceans and fish, including the young of important commercial fish species such as snapper and grouper. Unfortunately, NOAA researchers have concluded that invasive lionfish populations will continue to grow and cannot be eliminated using conventional methods. Marine invaders are nearly impossible to eradicate once established.

What infuriates me the most, is that not only do certain people spend thousands of dollars to purchase these exotic animals as a “really cool pet” to show-off to all of their yuppie friends, but when they longer decide they want to keep them, they simply dump them in THIS environment, which causes massive problems for species native to THIS country.

For pete’s-sake, if you just have to have a species of animal that is NOT native to our country and if you decide later on that you don’t want it anymore, then call your local zoo, or the Department of Fish and Game in your city, county , or state. DO NOT release these invasive species into our habitat, as it will cause great harm and devastation to our native species.

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