” One Happy Island! “
If you are planning a trip to Aruba, here are a few things you need to know when it comes hunting lionfish.
Aruba and the other the Dutch Islands of Bonaire and Curacao have a shared
regulatory system regarding the culling of invasive lionfish but each has its own lionfish removal strategy and we will look more into that in the weeks to come.
Aruba is famous for warm and friendly people (who all speak English) and is considered to be a very safe place so relax and enjoy their amazing food and many attractions! And if you’re interested, you can enjoy some lionfish hunting as well! Our good friends at the foundation called ‘Aruba Lionfish Initiative’ (A.L.F.I.)
are the ones to contact before your trip to Aruba. This organization is the only one on the island authorized to offer lionfish certification and approved polespears. They’re working hard with local government to set up standards for safe, reef conscious and effective lionfish management.
Spearfishing is illegal! (spear guns)
With an A.L.F.I. certificate that costs $100 you are permitted to use an approved polespear / sling with no more than 4 barbed tines. These guys have recently partnered with “Pure Diving Aruba” which is a one stop service for all local and visiting divers including your certification, polespears and both boat and shore diving expeditions. They are considered to be local experts among several other topnotch dive shops and charterboat operations on Aruba!
Happy Divers also welcomes you for Lionfish Hunting or certification/
There are no deep water lionfish trap restrictions on Aruba at this time and A.L.F.I. continues to work with local authorities to set those standards. They have built a couple of Dr Steve Gittings’ folding style traps to try out, and that work continues.
There are also a few great ways to sample lionfish on Aruba these days. If you enjoy sushi check out ‘E Sushi Shap’ in Oranjestad or order some lionfish ceviche at the ‘Bucuti Beach Resorts’ also in Oranjestad. You can also be served a whole lionfish beautifully prepared at the ‘Chicken and Lobster’ restaurant in Noord. And watch for a new snack trailer soon to open in Paradera! Guests will be able to try lionfish soups, kibbling, filets and deep fried lionfish ‘wings’ … all at local prices!
Happy hunting and please share your photos with us!
Reporting to LFU,
Lionator Pole Spears