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Lionfish

Lionfish, also known as Turkey Fish, Dragon Fish, Firefish, or Butterfly Cod, are venomous fish belonging to the Order Scorpaeniformes. They are one of the most spectacular looking marine fish having exotically beautiful Fins and deadly Spines. They belong to Scorpion Fish family. The most sought-after species of Lionfish for aquarium trade belong to two genera, Dendrochirus and Pterois. They show patterned appearance and have a long and differentiated Spine. Fresh Marine offers several interesting species of this adorable looking predator fish. However, prior to moving on to them, let’s check few common features found in Lionfish.

Compatibility. Lionfish are aggressive. They should be kept one per tank as they are Territorial also in disposition and can attack the members of their own species & other ornamental Crustaceans. They must be kept with fishes, which are large. Lionfish do not harm stalk less invertebrates such as, Sponges & Corals. Lionfish are Reef Compatible and must be kept in large aquariums.
  • Habit & Habitat. Lionfish are usually found on Coral Reefs in the Tropical Indo-Pacific region and in the shallow waters of Caribbean Sea & Atlantic Ocean.
  • Morphology. Lionfish are hardy and can reach up to a size of 30-35cm. They have a vertically crossed body pattern with Red stripes. The Eyes are covered due to this color pattern. The fish have extended Dorsal Fin Spines and over sized Pectoral Fins. Fin Rays are not webbed together, instead each of them is independent. Each species of Lionfish have a particular pattern of Zebra Stripes.
  • Ideal Marine Aquarium Environment. Lionfish require a Specific Gravity of 1.020-1.025, a pH of 8.1-8.4, and a Temperature of 72-78°F, in the aquarium.
  • Aquarium Feeding. Lionfish are Carnivores and they feed on live foods such as Live Fish, Live Shrimp, Fish Meat, Prawns, and almost all types of Worms, etc.
  • Aquarium Breeding. Lionfish do not readily breed in captivity.
  • Care. Lionfish possess venomous Spines and they therefore require moderate care and caution. Experts should handle them.


  • Some of the best selling Lionfish available at Fresh Marine are listed below. All these species belong to the Family Scorpaenidae.

  • Antennata Lionfish (Pterois antennata). Also known as Ragged-finned Firefish and Spotfin Lion Fish, these fish are beautifully marked with alternating streaks of Red, White, and Brown. In the membranous region, they have dark spots, which resemble an eyespot. The back of the Fin Ray is White in color and it extends past the Caudal Peduncle of the Pectoral Fin. The general size is about 7”, but can grow up to 9”, and requires a minimum of 55 Gallons tank capacity.
  • Dwarf Zebra Lionfish (Dendrochirus zebra). Also known as, Zebra Lionfish and Dwarf Lion Fish, these beautiful looking fish have Red, White, & Black straight bands, which are present all along their body. They can grow up to a size of 4” to 5” in length and require a tank of minimum 30 Gallons capacity.
  • Fu Manchu Lionfish (Dendrochirus biocellatus). Also known as Twinspot Lionfish and Ocellated Lionfish, these have Red, White, and Black Stripes all over their body. The body is Red-Orange with dark Black spots. If you look closely, one can see the Feeler Appendages attached to its chin. These unique appendages differentiate Fu Manchu Lionfish from the other species of the Lionfish. Their Prey Stalking is unique with its different body parts shaking at the different turns while preying. Growing to approximately 4” in size, this species requires a tank of minimum 30 Gallons capacity.
  • Fuzzy Dwarf Lionfish (Dendrochirus brachypterus). Also known as Shortfin Lionfish and Dwarf Lionfish, these Lionfish, occurring in Brown, Red, and Yellow colors, have Red, White, & Black Vertical Stripes all along their body. The Fuzzy Dwarf Lionfish have a fuzzy Skin texture due to their Scales, while the Pectoral Fins have stripes and patterns. Growing up to 4” to 5”, this species require a tank of minimum 30 Gallons capacity.
  • Radiata Lionfish (Pterois radiata). Radiata Lionfish look similar to Antennata Lionfish, except that these Lionfish have horizontal stripes on their Caudal Peduncle. Radiata Lionfish are 7” in length and require a tank of minimum 55 Gallons capacity.
  • Volitan Common Lionfish (Pterois lunulata). Also commonly known as Turkish fish, Luna Lion, Butterfly Cod, Devilfish, and Black Volitan Lionfish, this Lionfish is found in two different colors, Red & Black with Reddish/Brown stripes and Black markings, respectively. The Volitan Lionfish is around 7” to 8” in length and requires a tank of minimum 55 Gallons capacity.


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