As the population of lionfish grows, additional stress is placed on the coral reefs that are already suffering from the effects of pollution, disease, and climate change. Because the lionfish eat the herbivores who typically eat the algae growing on coral reefs, the algae grows more so than it should, which is detrimental to the coral reef.
This is a problem that many people are still not aware of. One of the goals of a lionfish derby—a single-day competition to remove as many lionfish as possible—is to educate the public on this issue. There are also a lot of myths and misconceptions about lionfish that need to be cleared up.
In a lionfish derby, teams collect lionfish by spearing or netting while they are free diving, SCUBA diving, or snorkeling. The competition begins at sunrise and ends by 5:00 pm. Have a look below for more information about the upcoming lionfish derbies in your area.
Halperns’ is also offering a cash reward in exchange for your lionfish.