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Surgical lion fish study could help determine optimum culling times

Researchers from CCMI in Little Cayman are going to great lengths to understand the day-to-day movements of the invasive lionfish.

So far the research team has surgically implanted 22 lion fish with an acoustic tag that will track the individual fish’s movements, both horizontally and vertically along the reef.

If lion fish are found to move predictably between deep and shallow reef habitats, the information could help cullers select the optimal times to control the population within recreational diving limits.

“It’s really interesting,” said CCMI Research Scientist Dr. Alli Candelmo. “One of our fish went to 115 meters, and quite a few of them are going to 50 and 60 meters regularly, so they are doing the deep dives that we thought they might do.”

About the author

Joe Avary

Joe Avary

Joe Avary has been with Cayman 27 since 2014. He brings 20 years in television experience to the job, working hard every day to bring the people of Cayman stories that inform the public and make a difference in the community. Joe hopes his love for the Cayman Islands shines through in his informative and entertaining weather reports. If you have a story idea for Joe or just want to say hello, call him at 324-2141 or send an email to

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