What is a Zookeeper?
What makes it the optimal device used for catching lionfish?
These are some of the most questions we receive from people when they see a Zookeeper for the first time. Don’t worry, we will explain everything to you right here!
A Zookeeper is a unique device created to house lionfish and their venomous spines while helping to prevent the person from being stung. Our Zookeepers are extremely important and useful for a diver who is hunting lionfish because it allows them to place the entire fish, spines and all, within a device and continue their dive. In addition to its use with containing lionfish, the Zookeeper is optimal for all types of hunting, whether it be lobster or even debris. Our container is specifically designed so that whatever you decide to put in it, stays inside and away from anyone or anything else.
The Zookeeper in its most basic form is made from a clear PVC, capped with molded flanges, topped with injection molded funnels, and bottomed off with a patented drain. When put together, you have a device that ensures very minimal drag and safer hunting methods for those trying to rid our reefs of lionfish.
Looking at it a little closer, the top of the Zookeeper has an adapted funnel that was specifically molded to be durable, but also flexible enough that our spears are able to enter and exit with ease. They are currently in their third generation which is considerably thicker so that there is less wear and tear. All of our Zookeepers also come with a paracord that allows users to easily attach clips and/or Zook Straps that ensure it is attached to the person.
The bottom of the Zookeeper has also evolved, now allowing for water to drain quickly when exiting the water. Arguably, the drain can be called the most important part of the Zookeeper! Its patented technology and special design allow for water to easily flow throughout the Zookeeper while it is submerged, but also drains significantly quicker than other models. The women in our ZooKeeper Team can all attest to the ease of using a Zookeeper both, in and out of the water. By the time we are up the ladder, all the water has drained from our Zookeepers, adding only minimal extra weight to our gear.
Instead of clipping the spines off of the lionfish and possibly endangering other people, divers with Zookeepers can contain the whole fish and continue to slay! Even when not hunting lionfish, our ZooKeeper team loves to use their Zookeepers to hold lobster and trash so that it cannot scratch them or their gear up. We are always trying to participate in all of the reef/ beach clean-ups, using Zookeepers to safely hold the trash because it is the universal marine containment unit!