Invasive Lionfish Fillets Fuel Conservation Campaign in Jamaica

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Sometimes, the best way to control an invasive species is to simply eat them. That is the approach that Jamaica has taken with lionfish, an invasive species that in the span of a few short decades established a significant presence in the Caribbean and off the East Coast of the United States. With a lack of natural predators in these areas, lionfish populations are booming, which in turn causes a decrease in the small fish and crustaceans that they prey on. The loss of these species can be devastating to reef ecosystems. However, the Associated Press reported that Jamaica recently counted a 66 percent drop in lionfish sightings within shallow coastal waters.

This drastic change came after a four-year national campaign to raise awareness of the colorful predator. The greatest success was in promoting lionfish as a food source. Previously, fishermen avoided the dangerous lionfish for their painful stings and the low demand they generated at the market. Now, lionfish fillets are quick sellers.

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Source: Outdoor Hub

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