View Full Version : Lionfish on the East Coast: Invasive Species
06-30-2008, 05:50 PM
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Local divers off the coast of North Carolina were not expecting to see what they found on that August day in 2002: exotic and beautiful lionfish, common to the warm waters of the western Pacific but non-native and unknown off the Carolina coast.
They're also venomous.
07-01-2008, 12:39 AM
This reminded me of my first year biology course. As part of the evolution section we looked at invasive species (zebra and quagga mussels, kariba weed and water hyacinth) and methods of control.
Sadly for our environment, once many invasive species are introduced they are very hard to control, let alone eradicate completely.
The best results are usually seen in controlling asexual organisms (for example kariba weed has been controlled by introducing beetles that feed solely on it, as it can't evolve defences since it reproduces by cloning). Sexually reproducing organisms are very hard to control due mainly to the fact that they have the ability to evolve defence mechanisms.
When it comes to invasive species, an ounce of prevention is really worth a pound of cure, because stopping the invasion before it starts (rules for ballast, importing of of organisms, etc) is alot easier, less expensive, and more effective than attempting to eradicate the organism and then restore the habitat.
08-24-2008, 12:45 PM
Not only are they spreading up the US coast. They are going down into warmer waters as well. In 2004 they have been sighted in the bahamas.
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