Firefish or Lionfish are all from the family Scorpionfish or Schorpaenidae. Some only count the species from the genus Pterois as the Firfish, others also include a number of other genera such as Brachypterois, Dendrochirus, Ebiosa and Parapterois. Given the behavior and appearance, we go with the latter. The most famous lionfish is Pterois volitans, which is also frequently kept in the aquarium.

Originally, this last species is only found in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, but unfortunately due to accidents and aquarium enthusiasts they were introduced to other parts. They have also found their way to the Mediterranean Sea through the Suez Canal. Unfortunately, the Firefish has few natural enemies, which makes it a real nuisance in the Caribbean Sea, along the coast of North America and now also in the Mediterranean Sea.


The spines are sharp and venomous. If you are stung by a lionfish, it injects a neurotoxin that can cause severe pain. The wound can inflame, swell, etc. Heating the wound to about 45 degrees Celsius ensures that the poison breaks down slowly and the pain decreases slightly. In rare cases, the venom can even cause an allergic reaction resulting in the death of the victim. So make sure you handle lionfish with care and that you know what to do if you get stung!

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