Effort expanded against invasive lion fish

The invasive lion fish is generating and extensive network of concerned officials and institutions.

Among other actions, it appears that the environmental ministry will create a  Comisión Nacional del Pez León.

The most affected by the fish are members of the  Asociación de Pescadores Artesanales del Caribe Sur. The lion fish has a voracious appetite and uses large fins to herd smaller fish to the dinner table.

The association also is the organization that runs a tournament for catching lion fish. The next one will be in September.

The Programa de las Naciones Unidas para el Desarrollo is now involved in the effort.

The best way to capture one of the fish is by spearing. And the fishing organization has created a plan that includes sweeps of the coast by divers. The organization also wants to alert residents to the culinary use of the lion fish, called  pez león in Spanish.

An outline of efforts against the fish was presented Monday to the  vice minister of Agua, Mares, Costas y Humedales of the Ministerio de Ambiente y Energía.

The fish has been a problem for at least five years. It has made a home all over the Caribbean, and Florida academic institutions are major researchers.

The research says that the best way to eliminate the fish is by spearing.  And that is how the contest works on the Caribbean coast each year. Unfortunately, some fish tend to live below depths comfortable for divers.

The fishing association has been maintaining some 200 traps in the Caribbean for at least two years.

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