The lionfish is a poisonous fish with beautiful fins! What to do if you get stung?

[no_toc] Explains the ecology of lionfish and how to identify them


classification Perciformes Scorpionidae Lionfish genus
Japanese name Lionfish
scientific name Pterois lunulata 
distribution Various coasts of Japan south of Hokkaido
feature It has horizontal stripes all over its body. The dorsal and pectoral fins are large, with long fin rays.

Origin of the name of the lionfish

Lionfish are characterized by beautiful fins


The kanji notation for the lionfish is "Minokasako". The name comes from the long pectoral fins and dorsal fins of this species that look like a raincoat and look like they are wearing it.


By the way, there are two names in English, "Luna lionfish" and "Dragon's beard fish". Both names are exaggerated, perhaps because of the flashy appearance of the lionfish.

Also known as Yamanokami

Lionfish is also known as Yamanokami


It's not uncommon for fish to have multiple aliases and regional names, and the lionfish is no exception and has many names. A typical example is the name ``Yamanokami'', which is mainly used in Kyushu, and there are many regions other than Kyushu that are called by this name.


In addition, there are names such as "Kimiokoze (Kochi)", "Hanaokoze (Wakayama)", and "Mate (Mie)". By the way, there is a fish called "Yamanokami" by the standard Japanese name. It is a fish belonging to the Perciformes family of the Sculpidae family, and although it has the same nature as salmon, it is a freshwater fish and is a completely different species.


Lionfish ecology

What is the ecology of lionfish


Lionfish are often seen when diving, but they are surprisingly temperamental fish and sometimes come towards humans. If you see a lionfish in the sea, move away slowly so as not to irritate it.


Although we often see them during the day, lionfish are actually nocturnal, and at night they actively swim and feed. The lionfish feeds on small fish, crustaceans such as shrimp, and so on.


In addition, lionfish and rockfish, which are closely related to lionfish, are known to be ovoviviparous, giving birth to juvenile fish, but lionfish are oviparous like many other fish and give birth in the form of eggs.

Lionfish are dangerous poisonous fish!

The lionfish's fins are highly poisonous, so be careful!


The lionfish is a very beautiful fish, It has powerful poisonous glands on the spines of its dorsal, pelvic and anal fins.If you are stung, the affected area will swell and cause severe pain.


Deaths are rare, but severe cases can cause nausea, dizziness, difficulty breathing, and loss of consciousness, so if you are stung by a lionfish, immediately go to the hospital. The poison of the lionfish is a protein poison, so as an emergency treatment, soaking the affected area in hot water at about 40-50°C will deactivate the poison and relieve the pain.


What if a lionfish is caught?

What to do if you catch a lionfish


On rare occasions, you may catch a lionfish when you are hole fishing, sabiki fishing, or short throwing fishing on the embankment. If you try to remove the hook with your bare hands, you may get stung, so if you catch a lionfish, hold the fish with a fish grip or scissors to safely remove the hook.


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If you cut the line every time you catch a lionfish, it's a waste of a gimmick, and it's a pity for the fish. Always take these tools with you when you go fishing so that you can remove the hook as quickly and safely as possible.

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species similar to lionfish

The lionfish also has a companion that looks like it. Here, we will introduce the species that resemble lionfish and how to distinguish them.

red lionfish

How to distinguish red lionfish and lionfish


It is a large species with a body length of about 30 to 40 cm, distributed from the western Pacific Ocean to the Indian Ocean. It is classified in the lionfish genus like the lionfish and has a similar appearance, but it is possible to distinguish it if you are conscious of its body color and pattern. First of all, the body color of this species is darker overall than that of the lionfish, with reddish brown and dark brown as the base color.


Next, for the pattern, pay attention to the part from the bottom of the chin to the chest, dorsal fin and caudal fin. While the lionfish does not have stripes on its chest, this species has a feature that also has a pattern on it. In addition, the lionfish has no black spots on the dorsal and caudal fins, or even if they have them, they are faint, whereas this species has them clearly.

Aedes lionfish

Aedes lionfish is a small species


It grows only up to about 20cm in length, is smaller than the lionfish, and belongs to the genus Lionfish. It is easy to distinguish between this species and the lionfish because of their visibly different appearance.


First, in this species, the fin membrane of the pectoral fin extends only to the middle of the soft ray and does not reach near the tip. Next, this species is characterized by a flap above the eye that stretches greatly upward, and the flap has a striped pattern. The number of spines on the dorsal fin is 12 in this species and 13 in the lionfish.

giraffe mino

Kirinmino's pectoral fins are fan-shaped


It is a species with a body length of around 20 cm, and is classified as the perciformes of the Scorpionaceae family. It is distributed from the western and southern Pacific Oceans to the Indian Ocean, and is commonly found in shallow rocky reefs and coral reefs.


The morphology of this species is clearly different from that of the lionfish, so it can be easily distinguished.


First of all, regarding the shape of the pectoral fins, this species has fan-shaped fin membranes without notches. Next, this species has an upper eye flap and three pairs of flaps on the snout end. Finally, this species is characterized by the letter "T" pattern on the caudal peduncle.


How to keep lionfish

Can lionfish be kept in an aquarium?


The lionfish is highly appreciated due to its flashy appearance, and you can almost always see it in aquariums. Due to its high environmental adaptability and durability, it is also recommended as an introductory species for breeding saltwater fish.


first, Suitable tank size is 90cm class or moreis. The lionfish itself doesn't grow that big, but considering the maintenance of the water environment in seawater, this class is desirable. For marine aquariums, powerful filters such as top-type and external-type filters are standard, and if possible, it is ideal to introduce an overflow tank.


Suitable water temperature is around 23-28℃So please adjust it with a cooler or heater throughout the year. There is no problem if seawater is made using artificial seawater, but it is necessary to change the water regularly because the water becomes dirty when breeding.


Pay attention to water temperature when breeding lionfish


Also, especially in the summer, fresh water evaporates and the salt concentration tends to rise, so please add water as needed. Live bait is necessary because the bait basically eats only animal matter. Depending on how you feed them, they will also eat dried krill.


Divide it into 1 or 2 times a day and give as much as you can eat. Uneaten food can quickly degrade water quality, so it's a good idea to remove leftover food. Needless to say, Be careful not to get stung by poisonous thorns when working in the aquarium.

Can lionfish be eaten?

Can you eat lionfish?


Lionfish tend to be reluctant to eat because of their flashy appearance and poisonous fins, but if the poisonous fins are removed, the flesh can be eaten. Moreover, the body It's light, has no peculiarities, and is surprisingly delicious.that's right.


However, compared to scorpion fish and rockfish, it has more moisture and less flavor, so rather than enjoying the original umami of the meat with sashimi, it may be more suitable for cooking such as simmered or fried chicken. yeah. It's a fish that rarely goes on the market, so if you catch one, it's fun to keep one and see how it tastes.


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lionfish Season is summer (late spring) to autumnIt has been with. However, it is said that the taste of this species varies greatly depending on the individual, and it seems that the larger one is more delicious than the smaller one.


When cooking, it is a good idea to cut and remove the poisonous spines with scissors first so that they do not stick. Since good soup stock can be obtained from the ara, it goes well with simmered dishes and soups.


Is the lionfish a natural enemy of coral?

What impact do lionfish have on Atlantic coral reefs?


In recent years, the presence of lionfish in the Atlantic Ocean has become a problem. Originally, lionfish, which were not distributed in the Atlantic Ocean, breed in the same area and increase the population, resulting in Destruction of coral and reef ecosystemsWe are inviting the situation to be. However, lionfish do not directly harm corals.


The lionfish's strong vitality, including its high adaptability, the absence of natural predators in the Atlantic Ocean, and the lionfish's voracious appetite create a vicious cycle. Lionfish are highly adaptable to the environment, so they can survive in the Atlantic Ocean without any problems.


Lionfish alien species problem


The lionfish, which had increased in population, preyed on the native species with the momentum to drive them out, and among them, there was a strongly herbivorous species that actively eats algae attached to corals. Corals that have lost the species of fish that feed on the algae will become covered with algae and bleach, or die, destroying the reef ecosystem.


One of the reasons for the introduction of lionfish is the release of captive lionfish. Because of the potential for such situations, Never release alien species.

The lionfish is a fish that embodies the saying, "Beautiful flowers have thorns."

Lionfish is a beautiful poisonous fish


The lionfish has a very elegant atmosphere with its beautiful colors and the way it swims leisurely with its large pectoral fins fluttering. It is a fish that embodies "has thorns".


This flashy color is said to be a warning color, and it has the role of informing the surroundings that "I have poison" and "I am a dangerous fish". It's interesting that even if the color is attractive to humans, it looks dangerous to other creatures.

Explains the ecology of lionfish and how to identify them