Q:

What is a Volitan lionfish?

A:

Quick Answer

Volitan lionfish are venomous, semi-aggressive, carnivorous saltwater fish native to the Indo-Pacific region. The coloration of the Volitan lionfish varies depending on the maturity and age of the fish. They have large pectoral fins that spread out like a fan and tall, banded spines on their dorsal fins. Volitan lionfish are also known as red lionfish, common lionfish, butterfly cod and turkeyfish.

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What is a Volitan lionfish?
Credit: Andreas März CC-BY-2.0

Full Answer

The spines on the pelvic, dorsal, and anal fins are venomous, and a sting from a Volitan lionfish is stronger than but similar to a bee sting. A full-grown Volitan lionfish is 15 inches long and should be kept in a fish tank no smaller than 120 gallons with plenty of hiding spaces. Predatorial by nature, this species eats smaller fish that reside within the same tank. When Volitan lionfish are first introduced into a saltwater aquarium, they should be fed live saltwater feeder shrimp to jumpstart the eating process. Once acclimated, they can consume either live shrimp and live fish or a prepared diet of pieces of frozen squid, frozen silversides and pieces of fresh, uncooked table shrimp. As of 2014, small Volitan lionfish are available online for approximately $40, while large Volitan lionfish cost between $60 and $100.

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