Rashuge Dhirunthah: Lionfish

In the “Rashuge Dhirunthah” (Island Life) series, we will explore the biodiversity that can be found on and around the tropical haven that is Embudu Village Maldives. Join us as we take a deep dive into the marine and land species that you can find at Embudu Village, and surprise your friends and family with some interesting facts during your next visit. 


The Lionfish

Embudu Village has some of the best diving in the Male’ region within easy reach of the resort. Whether you are drifting through the infamous Embudu Express or exploring the secrets of Embudu Canyon, it would be hard to miss the flamboyant Lionfish, (Fanhaamas ފަންހާމަސް). 

Invasive to many areas of  Western Atlantic, the lionfish has built itself a notorious reputation as a threat to indigenous populations in those regions. However, the fish is native to the Maldives and, as such, not a threat to the otherwise fragile coral reef ecosystem. 

Often found sheltering over small overhangs, ledges and crevices, the lionfish has bright red and white vertical stripes that make it hard to miss. It also has large venomous spines that protrude from its body, protecting it from predators. The potent lionfish venom causes painful stings in humans – so don’t touch! 

The lionfish is mostly a solitary predator that tends to feed on small crabs, shrimps and small fish. The lionfish’s unfortunate prey are usually cornered and swallowed whole after a quick snap of the jaws. 

Whether you are snorkeling or diving, it is quite likely that you would spot this species. Remember to give the lionfish a wide berth and appreciate it from a distance, so as to not get stung. And don’t forget to snap a couple of pictures that would surely impress friends and family back home.