Are lionfish a danger to me?

This may be a question that’s on everybody’s mind.

Lion fish are indeed a danger to the reef but are they really a danger to humans?

Well it’s complicated.

Lionfish are not aggressive towards humans at least it hasn’t been recorded that they offencively attacked.


They can cause injury to humans out of self defense or even by accident. As mentioned in my colleague’s post ” Harvesting Lion fish”, she mentioned free divers. Most of the recorded injuries are related to them.

whilest hunting a number of scenarios can play off:

  •  The lion fish can get off the spear while fighting for its life and unknowingly swim into the diver and administer a venomous spine.


Related image
image courtesy
  •  underwater photographers are often another casualty. usually without better judgement, the photographer assumes that the beautiful creature is docile.

Bad decision..

The lion fish, using a defensive maneuver places the photographer at risk of being              seriously impaled by a venomous spine or two and delivering a potent dose of                    agonizing pain.

Image result for underwater photographer lionfish
image courtesy


  •  It is also quite common for people to get stung while handling them after hunt or even during the cleaning in preparation for cooking. The lion fish’s unsuspecting “death shake” catches the handler off guard.

Poor chap, fighting even in death…

image courtesy

I’ll end with a quotation from that sums up lion fish perfectly,

” Treat lion fish like a gun: it’s always LOADED. until the spines are removed and safely disposed of.”


By: Delia Singh

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