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Old 04-16-2014, 07:54 PM   #1
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LionFish

The all mighty lionfish in Florida no more

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For immediate release: April 16, 2014
Contact: Amanda Nalley, 850-410-4943

Suggested Tweet: #Lionfish invasion: @MyFWC moves forward with management changes [[VIEW THIS URL]] #Florida

Photos available on FWC Flickr site: Go to https://flic.kr/s/aHsjBiA5CJ.

Lionfish invasion: FWC moves forward with management changes

The lionfish is an invasive species that threatens Florida’s native wildlife and habitat. With that in mind, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) on April 16 moved forward with steps to combat the spread of invasive lionfish.

Changes proposed by FWC staff at today’s meeting near Tallahassee will be brought back before the Commission at its June meeting in Fort Myers for final approval. Changes include:

Prohibiting the importation of live lionfish;
Prohibiting the development of aquaculture of lionfish;
Allowing the harvest of lionfish when diving with a rebreather, a device that recycles air and allows divers to remain in the water for longer periods of time; and
Increasing opportunities that will allow participants in approved tournaments and other organized events to spear lionfish or other invasive species in areas where spearfishing is not allowed. This will be done through a permitting system.
Staff has been working with the Florida Legislature on a bill in support of the initiatives to prohibit the importation of live lionfish and the aquaculture of lionfish.

“By targeting the importation of lionfish to our state, we can limit the number of new lionfish that find their way into Florida waters and, at the same time, encourage further harvest to reduce the existing invasive population,” said State Rep. Holly Raschein, sponsor of the House bill. “These fish pose a significant threat to Florida’s ecosystem, and I am proud to stand in support of the proposed ban. Anything we can do to limit new lionfish introductions and further facilitate the development of a commercial market for this invasive species is a step in the right direction.”

Changes like these will make it easier for divers to remove lionfish from Florida waters and will help prevent additional introductions of lionfish into marine habitats.

Lionfish control efforts, from outreach and education to regulatory changes, have been a priority for FWC staff. In 2013, they hosted the first ever Lionfish Summit, which brought together various stakeholders from the public as well as management and research fields to discuss the issues and brainstorm solutions. The changes proposed at today’s meeting came from ideas that were discussed at the Lionfish Summit.

To learn more about these changes, visit MyFWC.com/Commission and “Commission Meetings.” To learn more about lionfish, visit MyFWC.com/Fishing and click on “Saltwater,” “Recreational Regulations” and “Lionfish.”

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Old 04-16-2014, 08:03 PM   #2
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I wonder if NC will be following suit
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Old 04-16-2014, 10:33 PM   #3
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This is silly there are so many in the ocean and most of the LFS down here buy them for $5 from divers

They are established from the Carolina's thru Brazil

They ain't going no where
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:21 AM   #4
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This isn't true. I live in Florida. They're still here.
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:45 AM   #5
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LionFish

They are wiping out native fish populations with no known predators except man. This has become a serious matter that our hobby is blamed for. Rightly so IMO. When you dive a reef they have preyed on, there is nothing left but lion fish. Maybe a big moray or two.
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Old 04-17-2014, 02:40 PM   #6
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This isn't true. I live in Florida. They're still here.
What isnt true?
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Old 04-17-2014, 05:57 PM   #7
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What isnt true?

They are still here. You said they are gone
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Old 04-17-2014, 06:42 PM   #8
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Too little too late. They need better control measures which are probably close to impossible already. Seems like they will eventually starve themselves out.
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Old 04-17-2014, 07:04 PM   #9
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They apparently taste good though
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Old 04-17-2014, 07:26 PM   #10
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They are still here. You said they are gone

This has to pass through first if you read you will see that they have to vote on it.


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Changes proposed by FWC staff at today’s meeting near Tallahassee will be brought back before the Commission at its June meeting in Fort Myers for final approval. Changes include:
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