Alien lionfish found off the coast of Brazil

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A lionfish has been spotted off the southeastern coast of Brazil, raising new concerns about the range of this invasive species.

This is the furthest point south ever documented for this voracious predator, which has been slowly spreading in range and can now be found as far north as Massachusetts in the summer months as well as into the Caribbean.

The 25cm/10in specimen of Pterois volitans was spotted and killed by divers off the coast of Brazil last May.

DNA analysis of the specimen suggests that it may have been related to the lionfish now being found in the Caribbean and had likely arrived in the area via natural larval dispersal rather than being released by a fishkeeper.

There have been no other reports of lionfish in the waters off Brazil since then.

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