Lionfish in the Bahamas

2502 Words Feb 2nd, 2018 10 Pages
Due to the nature of most items and goods being shipped by sea, it has been estimated that nearly 10,000 species are being shipped to different terrestrial regions at any given time [1]. However, species introduced to new environments rarely survive and even more infrequently become invasive in their new environment. Invasive species are uncommon because they are not able to reproduce, discover an adequate food supply or are subject to new predation. Research has recently turned to lionfish (Pterois volitans) in the Bahamas. Where Pterois volitans and Pterois miles, two species of the lionfish nearly identical in appearance, have forcefully occupied Caribbean waters. Lionfish are swiftly decreasing the numbers of smaller native fishes on the reefs [2]. With these reductions in the overall population of native species, it could potentially dismantle the entire marine food chain in the Bahamas, as the native species ensures that seaweed does not encroach on growing corals [3]. If immediate action is not taken, there is a great chance that this ecological area will be ruined, and nothing will be able to reverse the complications lionfish have caused [4].
The recent invasion has turned research from the studies of lionfish in their natural habitat to the ecology, behavior and genetics in their new habitat. Contributing innovative knowledge to…

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