Ideas about using OpenROV to eliminate lionfish?




I've also been working on a lionfish trap; would love to hear more of your design!



My website is send me a note on the contact page please.


Looking for a small submersible 12 volt motor, good to 3-400 feet. Is this the right fourm


Dear all,

could someone point to references that prove that lionfish are to be eliminated? Normally, an increasing apprearence doews not necessarily mean that they are a harm, especially if their population increases due to climate change, which provides better survival conditions. Other predators of the lionfish will follwo (de-phased in time) and might take care of the particular overpopulation, naturally.

Regards and thanks in advance - David


Here’a some reading:

And some less sciencey reading…

Hope this helps somewhat…



Wow, Jake, thanks a lot for your quick answer..

Great reading.That explains it...

Regards - David


This forum started with the challenge of how to arm an ROV with a 'multiple capture' device, so that an ROV at depth could catch more than one lion fish before having to ascend and reload - not how easy it is to spear them or weather we should be trying to eliminate them in the Atlantic. I am sorry to see that there has not been any progress in this area. I have a third design idea (attached) - and hoping to get some feedback on it. More importantly, it would be great to hear from an ROV designer/builder to get their take on this concept. My third submission shows the use of a re-loadable slurp gun and an alternative 'slurp hose' that goes to the surface, where a 'plunger pump' could suck them into the hose and eventually right into the boat. I have not drawn the pump yet, but would like to hear some weigh-in on the possibility/pitfalls of this idea. Thanks

1962-ROV3.jpg (610 KB)


No problem David! Wish I had the mechanical aptitude to assemble an open RoV, but will live vicariously through you guys till I figure it out.


If you are trying to go semi autonomous ....I think OpenCV's/EmguCV (computer vision Library) can be used with the beaglebone, and maybe you could use the webcam to do vision detection to positively ID the strip pattern of the lion fish, (juvenile of adult) (I have similar thoughts for cane toads myself using UAVs, just time pour right now to proceed).

PS: You'd need a pretty big slurp gun for the large suckers I just saw in the Philippines - about 35 - 40 cm long!

Try using a solenoid with a long shaft and a unbarbed end. then you could reverse polarity on the solenoid to retract, but travel distance of the shaft could be a challenge.


A fleet of autonomous ROVs equipped with moderately powered green lasers and controlled through OpenCV for computer vision, scouring the reef for lionfish, and upon detection, shinning the laser beams into their retinas should do the trick (it would harm their ability to hunt in the future), and would not need to have the mechanics of a spear. Its working with mosquitos


Yes above is an awesome idea and is do able. I'm really concern about the lion fish. We should put a group work together and develop this ROV. Here is a Computer Programmer on board to help. We can get rid of the lion fish ! Yes we can!!!


An alternative would be to add a collection basket that gets dropped down and positioned by the ROV, once the collection of lionfish is done the basket can be hauled up by hand. and for the more adventurous a Launch and recovery system can be built depending on the needs of the unit.


Another option would be a modification of this Rubber Band Gatling Gun Fires 672 Rounds In 48 Seconds


Hi everybody!

It's been really terrific seeing all the replies here on the forum. It almost makes me feel ambitious enough to build an OpenROV with such a supportive community! My next lionfish trip is in the Spring. I do like Manny's suggestion about about a lionfish ROV working group. What would be the first step? I'll see if I can come up with some funds to get a OpenROV unit if I can get some help.


Hi Jake well I will tell you I had an idea like yours before. Then I research trough the internet and this is the only topic I found of ideas to get rid of Lion Fish.

If we make this system profitable fisherman will buy it and hunt down lion fish in our waters. They are the ones that will eliminate them. But we have to create the technology first. I though to get in touch with and talk about this with them. They might help. Or any other organizations that are taking care of this invasive fish.

People in documentaries are of the idea we can't get rid of them. And I'm pretty confident we can.


Yea, I know Lad at REEF and told him about the idea but they have nothing in development. I think the first thing is prove the idea works and is better and safer for getting lionfish in deeper water. After we prove it works, then we can talk to folks like REEF or others about expanding....but proving it works is the first and most important element.


Yea I know that is the impression I got when I see every documentary online. We should push big TV chains like Discovery, BBC, or NatGeo to create a good documentary about lion fish. And work in the ROV and show REEF is do able.

I think REEF should create a contest to catch a lion fish with a remote device such as the ROV and people will get more interested.

Again if they make it profitable to fisherman, that's the beginning of the end of the lion fish in our waters.


Hi All. For those who's ultimate goal is to attempt to limit the destructiveness of Lion fish in our Atlantic environment, I want to share my latest findings...

I recently went to a meeting about how to combat the lion fish in Bermuda, where I live, and learned that there may be another effective way to combat Lion fish, or at least learn more about them. While I was one of the initial proponents of trying to figure out how to make a re-loadable spear on an ROV work (or other devices such as an underwater zapper), there is no doubt that there are many logistical issues (known and potentially unforeseen) that this type of project faces - the list is long. That does not mean that I have given up, only that there may be a better way forward, especially in this initial 'information-gathering' stage for deeper depths.

There is now experimentation in using modified lobster traps and trying to figure out a way to lure the fish in with live or artificial bait. Results have been captured with a GoPro at depths of around 200 ft using 5 'burst' shots at 15 min intervals over a week. There is work to be done to improve this system, but the beauty of it is its simplicity and use of existing techniques and technology.

For some of those who may not be aware of some of the biggest hurdles facing ROV use (which are amplified at depth), there is the need for very calm seas (limited opportunity), trolling at night (lots of artificial light needed, which could scare the fish away) or having to search in dark areas during the day (time consuming and high risk of entanglement) and all kinds of things to go wrong when deploying, dragging or retrieving 200' of tether.

ROVs may still be more effective a shallower depths, where many of the high risks are limited. In this case they could be used for scouting (saving dive time) and then divers with traps could be deployed when they are located.

Given these factors, I will now be focusing my energy towards creating the best traps and lures, which can easily be tested and proven using GoPros or similar underwater cameras, and easily deployed and retrieved. My newest challenge is to make the best artificial lure (as sending real fish down deep has its problems), that incorporates movement so it looks like a real school of small fish swimming in a circle (enclosed in a plexiglass case). I am thinking to use the natural motion of the buoy line to spin the 'merry-go-round' of fish in the simplest, most natural looking and efficient way

I am happy to keep this form updated with findings, if there is interest, even though it is an ROV forum - feedback is appreciated!


Valid post and I'm of the idea to do something we can't stay without doing anything. The traps ideas are really good. And actually in youtube I watch a video of a person that live in the indo-pacific waters and they catch the fish with live bait as you mention.

We may want to work in both directions. But we need to impulse the idea of the war against lion fishes has started and we need to fight it.

By the way I see the lion fish going to Pacific Waters anytime. Efforts need to be done so they don't cross the Panama Channel. We need to avoid that as much as we can.

I still think the ROV idea is really good and do able. Tech in our days is really advance.

Ted I'm a 3d modeller and animator if you need to spread the word how to build this traps count with me our anything else.

We need to make a group so we can promote this ideas.


Check this :