NACRI
Netherlands Antilles Coral Reef Initiative

last updated: May, 2010

LIONFISH

LIONFISH SPREAD THROUGH THE CARIBBEAN

Look at an animation of the USGS of how the lionfish has spread through the Caribbean

LIONFISH ON CURAÇAO

LIONFISH ON BONAIRE

MORE INFORMATION ON LIONFISH

LIONFISH RECIPES

GO TO DATABASE OF CURAÇAO SIGHTINGS

LIONFISH FAQ

MORE LIONFISH LINKS


October 2009: Lionfish arrive both in Bonaire and Curaçao

Lionfish collected by Atlantis Diving on May 15, 2010, measuring 21 cm
Ocean Encounters West dive staff looking at the first tiny lionfish caught at Watamula Oct. 27, 2009, measuring 5 cm long. Photos by Ayana Elizabeth Johnson

October 28, 2009. The first lionfish of Bonaire was sighted and subsequently caught and killed at Nukove on Bonaire on Monday Oct 26. It was 3 cm long, so a small juvenile. The next day, Tuesday 27, also on Bonaire, a second lionfish was sighted and caught at Something Special. This one was slightly bigger, about 5 cm long. That same day, Tuesday 27, a lionfish was caught by dive shop Ocean Encounters West at Watamula on Curaçao, it was also a small juvenile, about 4 cm long.

It would appear that a cloud of larvae carried by the ocean currents passed by the windward islands recently, out of which the larvae settled when they found the sea bottom within reach. It is likely then that hundreds of juvenile Lionfish are now living around the islands. Because they can live down to depths of 150 m (500 ft) or more we will never see most of them, only those that end up relatively shallow, like the three that have now been reported.

First Curaçao lionfish, 5 cm - top view
First Curaçao lionfish, 5 cm - side view