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Marine Animal Encyclopedia

Lionfish Pterois volitans

Although the lionfish can inflict a painful sting, it is not dangerous to humans. Its flamboyant coloration of red stripes serves as a warning both to divers and to would-be predators. Also known as the turkeyfish, the lionfish hunts at night using its winglike pectoral fins to trap its prey of fish, shrimp, and crabs against the reef.

Lionfishzoom image
  • Order Scorpaeniformes
  • Length Up to 15 in (38 cm)
  • Weight Not recorded
  • Depth 7–180 ft (2–55 m)
  • Distribution Tropical waters of eastern Indian Ocean and western Pacific
Lionfish habitat mapzoom image