Expanding Lionfish Removal Efforts, FWC Asks More People To Sign Up As 'Reef Rangers'

May 27, 2015

Florida wildlife officials want more people to sign up for their “Reef Rangers” program. It builds on the ongoing efforts to remove the invasive lionfish species from state waters.

To become a Reef Ranger, participants may require a particular set of skills…maybe like that famous line from actor Liam Neeson in the “Taken” movies?

“…what I do have are a particular set of skills, skills that I have acquired over a very long career, skills that make me a nightmare for people like you,” said Neeson, playing Byran Mills, an ex-operative in search of his kidnapped daughter.

“That’s fantastic,” laughed Amanda Nalley, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission spokeswoman. “But, all that’s really required to become a reef ranger is the desire to remove lionfish from Florida reefs and most likely the ability to dive will be one of the skills that you’re required to have.”

Nalley says participants interested in adopting any reef to remove lionfish on a regular basis won’t need skills like Neeson’s—more like diving and spearfishing skills.

Nalley adds research shows consistent removal efforts can help reverse the negative impact lionfish—which have no natural predators—have on affected reefs. To sign up, visit reefrangers.com. So far, 55 people have signed up for the program unveiled about two weeks ago.

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