Bahamas_Day45-182-Edit1By Lana Gunnlaugson, National SeaChoice Manager

It was during my first trip to the Exumas that I first heard about eating invasive species. Creating a market for invasive marine species helps to meet the growing demand for seafood, while lessening the havoc these creatures are causing in delicate ecosystems.

Lionfish are an invasive fish that threaten coral reefs and Bahamian ecosystems (not to mention South America and other regions of the world). Although beautiful to look at, the lionfish has very few predators due to its venomous spines. The lionfish is also a prolific breeder who preys on numerous other species of fish, making it quite the threat to local ecosystems. By harvesting lionfish and creating a market for them,we pretty much have a win-win situation.

But there are many other species invading ecosystems around the globe that could also provide new and interesting food supplies. Last week I read an interesting article on how one sushi chef, Bun Lai, uses his creativity to prepare mouthwatering dishes using invasive species such as Asian shore crabs, lionfish and jellyfish. Okay, so I might shy away from tunicates (also known as marine vomit), but for the most part I am an adventurous foodie!

This week, I found yet another article on the perks of an invasivore diet. It’s a rather convincing article, and there is definitely momentum building with more and more media buzzing about invasivorism. Although I might not try all of the items on the menu, I can definitely see why the invasivore diet might be the hottest new culinary trend. After all, if you can’t beat them, you might as well eat them!