Image via Death to Lionfish YouTube screengrab
While saying the only sustainable fish to eat is the incredibly invasive lionfish might be a bit of a stretch, there are a few activists who openly encourage diners to eat the fish in order to protect countless other species of native fish, and coral reefs as a whole. Lionfish are an invasive species with a voracious appetite, zero predators where it has invaded (since its poisonous spines kill anything that touches it), and they reproduce like rabbits. Luckily, they taste pretty great. Check out the funny PSA that warns us what we might see in another few years if we can't get the lionfish problem hammered out (plus, get some recipes!).
Death to Lionfish notes, "Lionfish have invaded the Caribbean, Bahamas, Florida and Gulf of Mexico. Populations are exploding and the invasion could become disastrous for coral reef ecosystems... In the Invasion Zone, few natural predators exist - except for humans!"
The Invasion Zone is actually fairly terrifying to look at. Just a decade ago, the fish were only an issue off the coast of Florida. Now, they're practically everywhere:
Image via Death to Lionfish
Lionfish eat the native fish that keep coral reefs healthy -- and they eat them in huge numbers. Since they aren't picky, they'll gobble up anything that moves, and there's no fighting back against its venomous armor.
"Management strategies adopted by NOAA and the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary are about trying to control populations of lionfish through programs that encourage CATCH and EAT! Lionfish are really tasty and easy to catch - just watch out for those venomous spines!"
But those spines don't have to be an issue -- they're fairly easily dealt with. The site even has recipes for how to prepare and cook lionfish. In fact, they provide 20 recipes for serving up the delicious fish!
So of all the invasive species to start dining on, if you're anywhere in the east, wild-caught lionfish can go at the top of your list.
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More on Eating Lionfish
Eating Lionfish May Be the Only Way to Stop their Caribbean Invasion
Eat a Lionfish to Protect Caribbean Reefs
Invasivores Take a Bite Out of Lionfish (and Other Invasive Species)
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Ocean Film Fest 2011: Can Networking California's Coastline Save Fishing Industries? (Video)
Ocean Film Fest 2011: Landscapes At The World's Ends Is a Stunning Visual Journey (Video)
Ocean Film Fest 2011: Plight of Cod In The Baltic Proves The Complicated Politics of Sustainable Fishing