Underwater there is no denying their beauty. From their brilliant coloration to showy pectoral fins, lionfish are fascinating to watch but they’ve also caused ecological chaos in the waters off South Florida because they have no natural predators and they eat important indigenous fish. That’s why a new ban on imports of lionfish into Florida has won preliminary approval from the state’s wildlife commission.
South Florida’s Burmese python population explosion may be a bit harder to deal with than originally thought.
South Florida is already dealing with a Burmese python invasion in the Everglades and now state biologists are concerned that the aggressive rock python might be the latest invasive species to become established in the Everglades and elsewhere in South Florida.
How are Florida wildlife officials going to stop the invasion of the lionfish?
Due to the fact that lionfish in the Atlantic don’t have predators, eat whatever fits in their mouths, and are naturally fast-breeders, wildlife officials have encouraged people to catch what they can, but recently a deep water expedition has raised concerns, revealing that the invasive species may be beyond a diver’s reasonable reach.
There are records for everything – just read the Guinness Book of World Records. Kelly Gestring, however, owns a record he never expected to attain…and the state biologist who monitors invasive freshwater fish wasn’t exactly thrilled about it.
Motivated by cash and curiosity, more than 1,500 hunters are deep in the Everglades on a final push to dent the Burmese python population.
A month-long hunt to eradicate Burmese pythons began Saturday, attracting nearly 800 people to hunt the invasive species on public lands.
South Florida fisherman removed more than 1,500 invasive lionfish from the waters off the Florida Keys during three lionfish derbies in 2011.
South Florida’s lionfish invasion has spread to the Gulf waters off Florida’s Panhandle.