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Old 05-05-2016, 08:50   #1
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Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Does anyone know of a case of Ciguatera from eating Lion Fish?
These little beasts are quite prevalent populating the reefs of the world and many people including myself are eating them yet I have not heard of any poisonings.
You would think that because these creatures are eating everything in site they would be one of the biggest carriers of Ciguatera.
Today I shun Barracuda but ironically have been eating Lion Fish. I have been in many places throughout the Caribbean and Bahamas where people also will not eat Barracuda yet they eat Lion Fish.
Does the Lion Fish have some form of immunity to Ciguatera or have I (we) just been lucky?
My suspicion is the latter but really want to know if anyone actually knows of any cases?
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Old 05-05-2016, 09:15   #2
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

I wouldn't eat a lionfish. Here's two articles that came up with a quick google search on that topic:

http://www.greenantilles.com/2011/11...n-in-lionfish/

https://coastalscience.noaa.gov/news...ish-poisoning/
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Old 05-05-2016, 09:20   #3
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pirate Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Watched a video the other day on how Groupers have adapted their techniques to include Lionfish in their diet.. Brilliant..
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Old 05-05-2016, 09:21   #4
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

The FDA says lionfish test positive for ciguatera (based on the testing done in the articles cited above) but notes there have been no known cases in humans from lionfish consumption.

Quote:
We have analyzed local fish populations in Florida, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Flower Garden Banks of the Gulf of Mexico and found unsafe concentrations of ciguatoxin which could cause illnesses if consumed. (See Refs. 1 6). Illnesses due to unsafe concentrations of CFP toxins have been linked to commercially caught fish such as: barracuda (Sphyraena spp.), grouper (including Epinephelus spp., gag (Mycteroperca microlepis), scamp (Mycteroperca phenax)), and amberjack (Seriola dumerili). Other reef fish associated with unsafe concentrations of CFP toxins include, but are not limited to: grouper (Family Serranidae), snapper (Family Lutjanidae and Symphorus nematophorus), jacks and trevally (Family Carangidae), wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus), mackerel (Scomberomorus spp.), tang (Family Acanthuridae), moray eels (Family Muraenidae), and parrotfish (Scarus spp.). In addition, we have also found CFP toxins in lionfish (Pterois volitans and Pterois miles) collected in waters surrounding the U.S. Virgin Islands. However, as of July 2013, there have been no known reports of CFP illnesses associated with the consumption of lionfish.

Guidance for Industry: Purchasing Reef Fish Species Associated with the Hazard of Ciguatera Fish Poisoning
This article has a possible explanation, saying the testing may be wrong:

Invasive lionfish likely safe to eat after all
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Old 05-05-2016, 09:27   #5
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

This is my unscientific best guess. I don't know all that much about Ciguatera. However, after twenty years in the aquarium industry I know quite a bit about lionfish.

Ciguatera is apparently caused by dinoflagellates which are consumed by herbivorous fish and in turn these fish are consumed by carnivorous fish like barracuda.

While lionfish will consume anything that will fit into their mouths, their main prey are small omnivorous reef fish. Also, while they have a large appetite, they are rather lazy. Unlikely to chase down fast herbivores.

So my best unscientific guess is that you might get ciguatera from lionfish but probably not a high chance like barracuda.

My 2 cents, worth exactly what you paid for it.......
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Old 05-05-2016, 09:43   #6
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Quote:
Originally Posted by Davy J View Post
This is my unscientific best guess. I don't know all that much about Ciguatera. However, after twenty years in the aquarium industry I know quite a bit about lionfish.

Ciguatera is apparently caused by dinoflagellates which are consumed by herbivorous fish and in turn these fish are consumed by carnivorous fish like barracuda.

While lionfish will consume anything that will fit into their mouths, their main prey are small omnivorous reef fish. Also, while they have a large appetite, they are rather lazy. Unlikely to chase down fast herbivores.

So my best unscientific guess is that you might get ciguatera from lionfish but probably not a high chance like barracuda.

My 2 cents, worth exactly what you paid for it.......
Been watching tv shows about this fish....no mention of ciguatera. Seems to be quite tasty, and like you say....diet is small omnivorous fish. You are what you eat.
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Old 05-05-2016, 10:34   #7
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Watched a video the other day on how Groupers have adapted their techniques to include Lionfish in their diet.. Brilliant..


That is interesting, cause I had always heard nothing eats a Lionfish, but I have video I took about ten years ago of a Moray taking a chunk out of one, Moray was hiding in the wall of a blue hole in the Bahamas
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Old 05-05-2016, 10:38   #8
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
That is interesting, cause I had always heard nothing eats a Lionfish, but I have video I took about ten years ago of a Moray taking a chunk out of one, Moray was hiding in the wall of a blue hole in the Bahamas

I had a pet bamboo shark eat a small lionfish. She died a few days later though. 😪


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Old 05-05-2016, 10:48   #9
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pirate Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
That is interesting, cause I had always heard nothing eats a Lionfish, but I have video I took about ten years ago of a Moray taking a chunk out of one, Moray was hiding in the wall of a blue hole in the Bahamas
Watch this grouper stalking and destroying a lionfish €” Quartz

Seems a well practiced technique to me.. herds it from the rocks to open water then dances around while the Lionfish tries to keep the spines pointed the right way.. till finally the Grouper feints and the Lionfish makes a mistake.. then Munch..
Brings to mind the monkeys in Japan who started washing their food in the sea before eating it decades back
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Old 05-05-2016, 13:09   #10
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Originally Posted by Dsanduril View Post
The FDA says lionfish test positive for ciguatera (based on the testing done in the articles cited above) but notes there have been no known cases in humans from lionfish consumption.



This article has a possible explanation, saying the testing may be wrong:

Invasive lionfish likely safe to eat after all
Not to be contrary, but I find this report to be complete hogwash. I've lived, worked, and sailed throughout the Caribbean since 2002 and I challenge anyone on this board to show me one confirmed case of someone contracting ciguatera from eating fish in the USVI. any island. I use to hear, "you can't eat fish caught off of the south", "you can't eat reef fish", you can't eat kingfish", and so on. Here is the truth. I have never contracted it and we eat a lot of fish. I have never heard of anyone in the Caribbean contracting it and I'm telling you that West Indians eat ALL FISH. Barracuda too. even the bigger ones. Last, Lionfish is excellent table fare, and is served in many restaurants and fish houses throughout the Caribbean including Off the Hook and "The Green House" on St. Thomas.This is simply another case of someone in an American agency trying to validate their job talking about a fantasy.
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Old 05-05-2016, 13:37   #11
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Hate to burst your bubble, but the medicos say 3% of USVI residents have at least one round of ciguatera every year. Around 10% of those, or about 260 cases a year end up in the hospital. The rest resolve at home with typical "food poisoning" responses and remedies.

Has nothing to do with whether or not lionfish carry it, but ciguatera is alive and thriving in the Caribbean just based on the number of hospital cases that treat it every year.
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Old 05-05-2016, 14:17   #12
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Watch this grouper stalking and destroying a lionfish — Quartz

Seems a well practiced technique to me.. herds it from the rocks to open water then dances around while the Lionfish tries to keep the spines pointed the right way.. till finally the Grouper feints and the Lionfish makes a mistake.. then Munch..
Brings to mind the monkeys in Japan who started washing their food in the sea before eating it decades back

I Googled it and even had videos of divers feeding them to Jew fish, I guess teaching them they are good to eat? I was told they were poisonous, so I used to avoid them, little buggers look slow, but in a short lunge, they are so fast you don't see them move


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Old 05-05-2016, 14:21   #13
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Originally Posted by Dsanduril View Post
Hate to burst your bubble, but the medicos say 3% of USVI residents have at least one round of ciguatera every year. Around 10% of those, or about 260 cases a year end up in the hospital. The rest resolve at home with typical "food poisoning" responses and remedies.

Has nothing to do with whether or not lionfish carry it, but ciguatera is alive and thriving in the Caribbean just based on the number of hospital cases that treat it every year.

Like I said, please show me some proof, because I've never seen any. Let me put it another way. No hospital or doctor in the VI (us or bvi) has ever recorded a single case that has been documented.
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Old 05-05-2016, 15:17   #14
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

"Like I said, please show me some proof, because I've never seen any."
And I've never met anyone who had a confirmed case of salmonella or listeria or botulism poisoning. Never met anyone who was struck by lightning, or bit by a shark.
I guess that means those three killers don't exist either?
And that I go walk with impunity during thunderstorms, and swim without fear when the big teeth are out to play?
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Old 05-05-2016, 15:38   #15
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Originally Posted by Jsta_Rebel View Post
Like I said, please show me some proof, because I've never seen any. Let me put it another way. No hospital or doctor in the VI (us or bvi) has ever recorded a single case that has been documented.
Is Google broken for you?

Quote:
A total of 1,829 cases of ciguatera at Roy Schneider Hospital were recorded from 1971 to 1979 (annual mean = 203), and 1,385 cases were recorded from 1995 to 2011 (with gaps from 2000 to 2001 and from 2005 to 2006, annual mean = 106 for 19952011 and 63 for 20072011).
I believe the Roy Schneider Hospital is located in St. Thomas, USVI.

Ciguatera Incidence in the US Virgin Islands Has Not Increased over a 30-Year Time Period Despite Rising Seawater Temperatures

https://www.whoi.edu/science/B/redti...poisoning.html
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