[Coral-List] Lion fish question

Thierry LISON DE LOMA thierry.lison at mail.pf
Fri Apr 19 02:40:55 EDT 2013

Hi Bruce,

you and interested listers may find broader informations on density, diversity and distribution of lionfishes in the wider Pacific, with references to the Atlantic invasion in the following paper.

Kulbicki M, Beets J, Chabanet P, Cure K, Darling E, Floeter SR, Galzin R, Green A, Harmelin-Vivien M, Hixon M, Letourneur Y, Lison de Loma T, McClanahan T, McIlwain J, MouTham G, Myers R, O'Leary JK, Planes S, Vigliola L, Wantiez L. 2012. Distributions of Indo-Pacific lionfishes Pterois spp. in their native ranges: implications for the Atlantic invasion. Marine Ecology Progress Series. 446:189-205

Best regards.


Thierry Lison de Loma, PhD

Coral Reef Ichtyologist

CRIOBE (Centre de Recherches Insulaires et Observatoire de l'Environnement) - USR 3278 CNRS-EPHE

BP 1013 PAPETOAI 98729
Ph: (+689) 561345 / 737002 (Cell)
Le 17 avr. 2013 à 11:04, BRUCE CARLSON a écrit :

> Steve,
> I know there are a number of papers dealing with the issue you have raised, but here are two that I have handy that shed light on this topic:
> Grubich, J.R. et al.  2009.  Diversity of lionfishes (Pisces: Scorpaenidae) among remote coral reefs of the Palau Archipelago.  Coral Reefs 28:807
> This brief paper gives an indication of the magnitude of difference in the numbers of Pterois species per hectare on a Pacific reef versus Western Atlantic areas.  
> and:
> Green, Stephanie J., et al.  2012.  Invasive lionfish drive Atlantic coral reef fish declines.  PLoS ONE 7(3):  e32596.  doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0032596
> This paper provides documentation on how West Atlantic reef fish populations have been affected by Pterois predation.  
> Hope this helps with your question.
> Bruce
> On Apr 17, 2013, at 8:15 AM, Steve Mussman <sealab at earthlink.net> wrote:
>>  This story is among many that has appeared recently in the main stream
>>  media. It compares the impact
>>  of lion fish to "a living oil spill".
>>  http://www.npr.org/2013/04/17/177359109/lionfish-attack-the-gulf-of-mexico-l
>>  ike-a-living-oil-spill
>>  My  question  is  what  scientific evidence is there that reduced fish
>>  populations and / or reef decline
>>  is directly related to the lion fish invasion?
>>  Is it possible that lion fish are in fact becoming a convenient scapegoat?
>>  I realize that they are likely contributing to the problem, but are we
>>  overlooking other more prominent factors?
>>  Natural predatory behavior seems to be developing as some reef species are
>>  learning to feed on lion fish.
>>  As far as I know reef fish are still abundant on the Pacific reefs where
>>  lion fish are indigenous even though
>>  they have few known predators in their natural surroundings.
>>  I just returned from a Caribbean destination where it appeared obvious based
>>  on my personal baseline that
>>  the reefs are in decline. There were many lion fish spotted and speared, but
>>  do we really know if the impact
>>  of this invasive species is as profound as many are asserting?
>>  Regards,
>>   Steve
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> exallias2 at gmail.com
> BCarlson at GeorgiaAquarium.org
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