Thursday, January 6, 2011

A New Taste Treat

Chris on the hunt near Compass Cay, Exumas

Chris loves catching dinner while snorkeling here in the Bahamas, and we’ve had lots of tasty critters. We’ve got a new favorite now: lion fish. The lion fish is an exotic species here. Originating in the Indo-Pacific, these fish are popular for aquariums. It’s proposed that an escape from a Florida aquarium fish farm resulted in fast-growing populations of lion fish throughout Florida, the Bahamas, and the Caribbean. The bad news is: these fish are voracious and have no natural predators in these new habitats, and research has shown that they decrease the number of local fish tremendously. The good news is that they’re really tasty, and easy to catch. So Chris had been a happy predator on lion fish, and I’ve been a happy consumer of lion fish. They are beautiful (those spines are poisonous, though Chris hasn't gotten stuck yet), but you know, they just don’t belong here.


  1. That is quite possibly the ugliest sea creature I've ever laid eyes on. He deserves to die. Bon appetit!

  2. I think it's great looking! It won't stop me from eating as many as we can catch, though. Can't wait to get there.

  3. Oh, there are much uglier. Toad fish and hag fish are two of the yuckiest (in my mind). Chris had incorporated the two species into his latest book, Scimitar Heir, which just went off to his editor (yeah!). The hag fish is, of course, a bad guy (or bad fish, if you want to be technical about it.

    Lynn and Steve - we can't wait to see you!

  4. I'm glad to see someone killing those lionfish in our abscence! Looking at your photos make we jealous, the Keys just don't compare. Have you tried lionfish ceviche?
    Laura and Jason