Cyprus, Nicosia

Dangerous fish off the coast of Northern Cyprus

Updated: 2 months ago

Off the shores of Cyprus, you can encounter several species of poisonous and simply dangerous fish. Let's talk about them.

These types of fish can pose a threat to humans if precautionary measures are not taken. Below is a list of some of them.

Dangerous Fish of Cyprus

опасные рыбы кипра


These are poisonous fish that often camouflage themselves in the surrounding environment thanks to their textured coloration. They can hide in the sand or among corals, and accidental contact with them can lead to severe poisoning—their spines are poisonous to both other fish and humans. A prominent example is the famous lionfish.


They are also quite dangerous to fish off the shores of Cyprus. They have sharp fins with venomous stingers that, while not lethal, can cause severe poisoning, painful burns, and temporary disability.

Striped Eel

Originally, this species did not inhabit the Mediterranean Sea but migrated from the Indian Ocean through the Suez Canal. Its first appearance in Cyprus was only recorded in 2022 in the marine area near the Apostolos Andreas Monastery on the Karpas Peninsula. The serrated dorsal fins have venomous glands, and a sting can cause very painful sensations.


Also known as the warty fish. The spines of the stonefish contain verrucotoxin, which is considered one of the most potent toxins found in marine organisms. It has also recently appeared in the waters of the Mediterranean Sea.


Also known as the bluefish, it is a large predatory fish with sharp teeth, capable of reaching high speeds and can be aggressive. Its bites can cause pain and wounds, and even when caught, it should be handled with caution due to the sharp spines on its back. However, it tends to keep its distance from humans in the water.

Moray Eel

Although not a poisonous fish, it can still cause trouble: its inwardly directed sharp teeth are not a pleasant encounter. They do not attack on their own, but if you put your hand into a rocky crevice, there is a great chance of contact. The bite is very painful, and there have been cases of unprovoked attacks on divers.

Frequently Asked Questions About Poisonous Fish in Cyprus

What precautions should I take?

  • Pay close attention to your surroundings when swimming and walking in the water, especially in places where scorpionfish or weeverfish may hide—such as rocks and reefs.
  • Do not touch fish with your hands, especially if they look unusual, brightly colored, or have sharp fins.
  • If you accidentally get stung or scratched by a fish, seek medical assistance immediately—poisons can cause severe burns and poisoning, and the sooner medications are administered, the better the chances of avoiding painful sensations.
  • Always wear appropriate footwear when walking in the water to protect your feet from potential bites or injuries, as well as sea urchins.

What should I do if I come into contact with a poisonous fish?

Treatment involves warming the affected area, usually with warm water, to neutralize the venom. Afterward, it is mandatory to seek medical attention as soon as possible.

It is important to remember that most fish in Cyprus are not dangerous to humans, and observing basic precautions will help you avoid unpleasant situations while enjoying your time on this beautiful island.

Subscribe to our Telegram channel and read useful life hacks about Northern Cyprus. If you are interested in underwater creatures, we recommend reading the "Fishing" section of the largest Telegram forum in Northern Cyprus, North Cyprus Forum.

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