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Lionfish stings....what do they feel like?

Discussion in 'Cozumel' started by terrylowe, Nov 23, 2010.

  1. terrylowe

    terrylowe Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Hattiesburg, Mississippi
    As more and more people hunt lionfish, I am sure that we will be seeing more and more lionfish "hits".

    What does it feel like? Can it be described within the confines of the rules of this board? Did you make a mistake giving the fish an opening (its final act of defiance)? Or did the fish outfox you? :coffee:
  2. Prop Joe

    Prop Joe Photographer

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: NW suburb of Chicago, Illinois USA
    Unfortunatly :(
  3. terrylowe

    terrylowe Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Hattiesburg, Mississippi
    Ya...I heard he had been hit.
  4. David K

    David K Angel Fish

    I'll see him in a about 2 weeks....I'll ask him!

    I'm hoping a norte blows in & we get to explore the windward side of the Island.
  5. Pelagicsal

    Pelagicsal Dedicated Dive Bum

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: A half-mile norte del Centro, Cozumel, Mx.
    How'd Memo manage to get hit? He recover OK?
  6. Travler108

    Travler108 Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Houston, Texas and Cozumel, Mx.
    Memo got hit and tells the funniest stories about it. The sting was on his thumb and although this was months ago, the skin is just starting to grow back. Looks like the sting kills all the skin around the area of penetration. Last week, diving with some doctors, he described the pain and showed the damage around. Made me rethink the idea of killing them myself!
  7. firstdive2005

    firstdive2005 Solo Diver

    # of Dives:
    Location: edmonton, alberta, canada
    You can get stung in various levels. The severe stings or neurotoxin injections can kill, they come down from there. I have seen rattle snake bites severe and minor. It's a matter of severity in the 'hit'. I know several people that needed hospitalization for both snake bite and Lion fish sting. I know others on the island that could not work for quite a while.
    With my sting, the pain lasted about 2 hours. Felt like a nail was drivin into my finger after being hit with a hammer. The end of my finger was hard, red and swollen. But not that severe. Looked like I hit it with a hammer. I was very close to going to the doctor but I'm a guy,(read idiot) and I though I'd wait until it got bad. I also got hit on my gluteous maximus when I sat down to close to one on the boat. That itched like a bitch I tell ya.
    So just like 'who is the best dive op' the answers to what does it feel like will vary as to the level of 'hit'.
  8. WetDawg

    WetDawg Captain

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Ft. Laud / Miami, FL
    Got a nasty sting this past summer and I can tell you it's worse than a bee sting or even Portuguese Man O' War sting.

    After shooting 2 large lionfish in about 100’ of water here of Fort Lauderdale, I was stringing them up. Went to snip the spines off per usual but realized that I had forgotten my scissors. My mistake was trying to cut the spines off with a regular dive knife that was not that sharp. You live and learn.

    The pain is intense, first my hand went numb and then the index finger where I got stung just felt like it was on fire. We called the dive. Hot water is supposed to mitigate this feeling. I sucked it up and the intense pain went away after about an hour however a slight numbness in my hand continued for 2 full days after the sting.

    I have whacked several dozen of these little buggers and have given seminars on how to handle them. The key is to take your time and use sharp scissors while the fish is still on the spear shaft. Be sure to snip ALL the spines top, bottom and both sides. Then, filet, cook and enjoy. They make excellent table fare similar in taste and texture to hogfish.

    I don't think there have been any documented fatalities from lionfish here in North America to date. However, the main concern is that some folks may have an allergic reaction and go into anaphylactic shock, in a similar reaction to a bee sting which kill and average 40 people a year in the US.
  9. deepstops

    deepstops Blacklight Poster ScubaBoard Sponsor

    # of Dives:
    Location: Weston, FL
    I got stung behind my thumb nail in early September. The thumb got swollen to the point capilary return ceased and I ended up with some (superficial) necrotic flesh that took about two weeks to slough off. The feeling in that thunb is still "different" than before.

    As far as the pain when it happened, a wasp or bee sting is more intense but for a much shorter duration. This pain lasted about 36 hours.

    I'd certainly avoid it (it was my own complacency that got me stung).
  10. geokr

    geokr Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Maryland

    That pretty much describes it FD05 - How bad it hurts depends on how bad you get stung. The venom is in a couple of glands that run along the sides of the barb spine. A sheath of skin covers the spine and slides back over the spine when it goes into something exposing the gland to the wound. The deeper it goes and the longer it stays the more venom gets transferred to the area. I got stung and about an eighth inch of spine stayed in. Hurt as you described for about three hours then faded away. You can deal with it. But it sure makes you a lot more careful....:D

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