Exploring Bermuda's Depths for Lionfish


Simply put, Bermuda is facing a lionfish invasion. Until discovering this awesome project, having an ROV for recon or diver support seemed far from reach. Open ROV is quickly changing the mindset of many of those involved in the effort of keeping their numbers in check.

Right now, our invasion is unique to our sister islands to the south in the Caribbean in that our high concentrations are at depths far beyond recreational diver limits. Only a few highly trained technical divers can explore to 200', 250', 300' to see and spear them but then they can only go out under good weather conditions, with the support of a great dive team, during the day, and can only stay down for so long. I am not a technical diver but am part of a small team that have been exploring from the shore and finding three our four when diving for about 100 minutes.

During our lobster pot season when commercial fishermen drop their lobster pots to very deep depths, they are pulling up lionfish in their pots. Sometimes, lionfish have displaced lobsters from the pots after making it a habitat! We'll see what happens during this upcoming season.

All I can say is that being able to use an ROV or a fleet of ROVs is a game changer. Although we would need a build that can go a lot deeper than the present limits of the Open ROV, having one or two to work with would be fantastic for shallow water recon. Another idea would be developing two-way communication between ROV and diver. Perhaps using a simple attention getting strobe or ping noise and messaging from topside via a scrolling news ticker type lcd screen. So many ideas!


Hey Weldon,

You're exactly right. We've had a pretty extensive conversation going about this here:


Look forward to hearing more of your ideas!



Awesome! I've actually spoken to Ted numerous times. Hopefully someone here will invest in a kit or a couple of kits to get something going.



Good Day Weldon,

I'm also of the same mind of using the OpenROV to help combat lionfish in Bermuda and am in the process of getting a kit. If all goes well, by the end of September I should be up and running.

Please contact me to discuss.



It would be so complicated to have a re-loadable spear gun, what about equipping the ROV with some moderately powered green lasers (penetrates water well) and, well, shinning the laser onto the lionfish eyeball retinas would certainly decrease their further hunting abilities. A fleet of low cost autonomous ROV's with visual pattern recognition software to seek out lionfish and burn their retinas with laser beams for eyeballs.


You should employ someone to oversee this.... A Lord.

Perhaps, some who wares an all black suit & helmet, breathes quite heavily, (i believe he may have asthma), has red light sabre, doesn't like little green men & is obsessed about his "death star" ..... and likes to kill Wookies :)

Even better, we could rename the openrov and call it a "Tie-fighter", what do you think?