Fish of the Month Contest: Hawaiian Lionfish

LIONFISH PHOTO CONTEST!!! Post your recent Hawaiian Red and/or Green Lionfish fish pics to Instagram. Tag @kona_honu_divers and #konahonudivers #lionfishphotocontest. Your post must be a new image (not a re-post) and uploaded by January 5th, 2017. Each entry will go into the drawing for a $25.00 gift card to Kona Honu Divers and/or Kona Freedivers. The winner will be announced January 6th, 2017!

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Hawaiian Red Lionfish by Stacey Herman

Hawaiian Lionfish are some of the KHD crew’s favorite reef residents.

There are two species of Lionfish you could see while exploring Kona’s coral reefs: The Hawaiian Red Lionfish (aka: Hawaiian Turkeyfish, nohu pinao, Pterois sphex) and the Hawaiian Green Lionfish (aka: Barber’s Lionfish, nohu pinao, Dendrochirus barberi).

The Hawaiian Red Lionfish is an endemic fish red-brown and white stripes and extravagantly long white spines extending from its pectoral fins. This ornate fish rests during the day beneath rocks, arches, and little caves. It’s on the prowl at night, hunting shrimp and crabs. It’s spiky appearance and vivid coloration is a warning sign to potential predators! Those spines are venomous! You can find these Hawaiian Red Lionfish as shallow as 3m/10′ to deep reefs of 122m/400′.

The Hawaiian Green Lionfish, also endemic, isn’t quite as vibrant as the Red Lionfish. This Lionfish tends to blend into the reef a bit better with its green-brown-red coloration with red eyes. Rather than spiny pectoral fins that are characteristic of the reds, the greens have interesting fan-like pectoral fins. These cute little venomous fish are found more frequently than the reds, typically in sand patches or on/under coral heads.

 

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