(WPTV) A south Florida restaurant is putting a predator on its dinner menu before its dangerous appetite destroys other marine life.
That's one idea for controlling the lionfish population--an invasive species rapidly spreading and wreaking havoc in the waters off the Florida coast.
Lionfish is the newest item at leftover's cafe that has everyone talking.
"Like, 'will i die if i eat it?' kind of a bit of an awkward question," said Chef Arturo Serrano who originally didn't know what make of adding the invasive venomous, species to the menu at first.
But after realizing it's killing off native species and ravaging south Florida reefs he jumped aboard.
"I mean it's eating all our local fish, it's really killing all of the reef. I mean it's a really beautiful fish but it's a very mean fish," said Serrano.
"The good thing about there being a commercial market is that you'll have more people targeting them and taking them to the store," said Amanda Neeley with Florida Fish and Wildlife.
Neeley says one obstacle standing in the way of commercial lionfish market. It's hard to catch.
"I think there's some hesitation, there's some misconception that maybe because lion fish have venomous spines, that venom is inside the meat. That's not true," said Neeley.
Neeley like Chef Serrano says the venom dies when the fish does plus heat neutralizes it.
He's hoping for eradication one bite at a time.
"We'll eat it, it's a delicious fish and it will prevent everything," said Serrano.