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Marcus Elieser Bloch’s 18th Century Fish Art

Bloch was the first to scientifically describe and illustrate the familiar Imperator Angelfish.

Bloch was the first to scientifically describe and illustrate the familiar Imperator Angelfish.

 The study of coral reef fishes is a relatively recent field in ichthyology. The earliest scientific works, by naturalists such as Artedi, Linnaeus and Forsskål, consisted of little more than a series of terse morphological descriptions, completely lacking any accompanying illustrations. For the general public interested in these geographically distant species, a vivid imagination or access to museum specimens was required to have any idea what they looked like.… More:

First Invasive Lionfish Found in Brazilian Waters

Thats right folks the infamous Caribbean species has made its way all the down the coast to Brazilian waters. A single lionfish was speared off the coast and a team of researchers including scientists from the California Academy of Sciences confirmed species analysis through DNA testing. A massive focus has been placed on the finding while scientists urge for a swift intervention plan: “For the past 20 years, invasive lionfishes have been restricted to the Caribbean,” says Luiz Rocha, PhD, Academy curator of ichthyology.fig1 “This new record shows us that lionfishes are capable of reaching far into other areas of the Atlantic, and other countries should be on guard, preparing for them to arrive.” The effort to stem invasion includes minds from all over the globe because the species (Pterois volitans) is particularly aggressive and can consume just about any an reef fish that will fit into its mouth. Rocha adds: “Brazilian fishes are being hit from all sides,” says Rocha. “Overfishing and habitat degradation are pervasive, and not even the most basic fisheries data are being collected. The best—and easiest—way to control an invasion is by trying to slow it down at the start.” Read more here.… More:

UPDATE! Our Lionfish Odd Couple Now Has Footage!

As you recall I previously posted about the strange relationship between Jim Gryczanowski’s Pterois volitan and his Blue Stripe Amphiprion clarkii. Well today I have an exciting update for you with this fantastic video of the adorable duo! Jim reports this behavior has been ongoing for a few weeks now, and while the couple seem comfortable with their living situation, the Clown is reportedly a bit stingy, and has yet to share his food with Mr. Lion. Let’s hope she realizes quickly that you must feed your man if you’d like to stick around. I know for sure Jared would eat me if I didn’t cook a decent meal every once in a while.More:

“Shocking” Not So Shocking Findings About The Lion

Today’s story comes to us courtesy of Charles Smith! Thanks for your submission, sir, I hope we see more of you in the future.

“National Public Radio recently published the following article to their website, about a young scientist’s experiment exposing lionfish to decreasing levels of salinity:

Sixth Grader’s Science Fair Finding Shocks Ecologists

Shocked! Just shocked!

Meanwhile, aquarium fish keepers have known about this for decades. It’s called hypo-salinity, and it’s an important part of the quarantine procedure. Fish can survive at low salinity; invertebrates cannot. Putting marine fish in low salinity rids them of … More:

They’re baaaack! Lionfish return to New York

IMG_8000sm What can it mean that after a complete absence of lionfish around Long Island, New York, for the last three years, they have suddenly reappeared?… More:

Florida to Ban All Pterois Lionfish Imports Beginning August 1st

We keep harping on the lionfish invasion of the Caribbean Sea, Atlantic Ocean, and pretty much all waters surrounding Florida because it is a serious, ongoing issue with seemingly no end in sight. Despite the best efforts of scientists to understand the issue, legislators to fix the problem, and recreational fishermen to eradicate the invaders, the problem persists to the point where different and often drastic measures have to be given a good look. The latest attempt to help tackle the invasion is the straight up ban on the import of all lionfish from the Pterois genus into Florida. But is it the right move? As spelled out in one of Ret Talbot’s latest contributions to the Reef2Rainforest blog, Florida Fish and Wildlife Commissioners unanimously approved the prohibition of the “importation of live lionfish from the genus Pterois“, approved divers to use rebreather equipment to harvest lionfish, and will allow the Executive Director to issue permits to spearfisherman to remove lionfish and other non-native species from areas where the activity was previously prohibited. Ret goes on to point out that lionfish from the genus Dendrochirus are not considered in this ban despite there being significant genetic similarities between them and members of the Pterois genus. This new set of rules goes into effect on August 1st, and as usual, there are good arguments from both sides of the aisle. One of the key incentives intended by this ban is that marine aquarium importers who still rely on lionfish as part of their product offering will start collecting fish out of Florida waters to fill their demand. This approach, coupled with aggressive erradication efforts from other industries, is hoped to be able to keep the lionfish under better control, though nobody knows what real impact will be had.

Bobbit Worm Violently Attacks, Kills Lionfish Video

We don’t often promote violence, but this video recently posted on is quite breathtaking. It features a bobbit worm, a type of huge bristleworm that’s often found as a hitchhiker in marine aquariums, attacking a lionfish and dragging it into its burrow. The worm extends its feeding tentacles into the was, barely above the surface of the sand, which presumably attracts prey fish to venture close enough for an attack. The lionfish wanders too closely and is quickly snatched up despite appearing far larger than the worm. The visible portion of the worm is quite misleading. Only a tiny mouth is visible, but the worms can grow to be well over 6 feet long, even in captivity. This is likely the reason why the meals have to be so large. In the aquarium, these worms don’t have near as much sand to dig into, but that doesn’t make them any less dangerous

Picture of the Week, Yellow Fuzzy Dwarf Lionfish

 Pictured in the last AquaNerd Picture of the Week of 2012 is the rare yellow fuzzy dwarf lionfish, seen locally at the Houston Fish Gallery. Now, we’re not exactly fans of lionfish, as they are extremely abundant in the hobby and have invaded the waters of the Atlantic. That said, this yellow fuzzy dward isn’t exactly your run of the mill lionfish. It’s quite rare in fact, as it is only found in one location, the Lembeh Straits. Despite its rarity, this yellow lionfish isn’t the only one to grace the Houston aquarium scene. Fish Gallery received a total of two last year, with the first being in the store on the same day we were giving a talk to a group of hobbyists about marine aquaria.  Read MoreMore: is the world's leading destination for sustainable coral reef farming and the aquarium hobby. We offer a free open forum and reef related news and data to better educate aquarists and further our goals of sustainable reef management.