Compete in the 2020 Lionfish Challenge 

04 Jun, 2020

Invasive Lionfish on ice at the 2019 Lionfish Removal and Awareness Festival. Image credit: Bekah Nelson/FWC

Invasive Lionfish on ice at the 2019 Lionfish Removal and Awareness Festival. Image credit: Bekah Nelson/FWC

via Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC)

Compete in the 2020 Lionfish Challenge

Now is the time to register for the 2020 Lionfish Challenge! The Lionfish Challenge is an incentive program that rewards harvesters for their lionfish removals. With a tiered system, everybody can be a winner. The participant who harvests the most lionfish will be crowned the Lionfish King/Queen. The Challenge is open now and will run through Labor Day (Sept. 7). Register online at FWCReefRangers.com at any time.

There are two categories: recreational (number of lionfish) and commercial (pounds of lionfish). Participants with an active Saltwater Products License (SPL) and lionfish sales within the last year will automatically be included in the commercial category. The recreational category is open to all divers who do not have a SPL.

The Challenge has a tiered prize system that allows everyone to be rewarded for their removals. The more removals you complete, the more prizes you win. To qualify for the Challenge, harvesters must collect 20 lionfish (recreational) or 20 pounds of lionfish (commercial). Once those initial lionfish have been submitted, the participant will receive a commemorative 2020 Lionfish Challenge Coin and Dri-FIT long-sleeve T-shirt. The prize tiers are as follows:

  • 50 lionfish (100 pounds)
  • 100 lionfish (200 pounds)
  • 200 lionfish (400 pounds)
  • 300 lionfish (600 pounds)
  • 400 lionfish (800 pounds)
Lionfish are voracious, invasive predators not native to Atlantic waters. Intentional harvest is one strategy in an effort to reduce their impact. Image credit: Bekah Nelson/FWC

Lionfish are voracious, invasive predators not native to Atlantic waters. Intentional harvest is one strategy in an effort to reduce their impact. Image credit: Bekah Nelson/FWC

How to submit catches:

Recreational – the first 20 lionfish must be submitted to the FWC Lionfish Team with a photo of all lionfish laid out so they can be counted. The photo must include the harvester’s name, date of harvest (shown on phone or dive computer), and their signature. After the qualifying tier has been met, the harvester must submit their lionfish tails with their information (harvester name, date of harvest, and signature) to a verified checkpoint. A 2020 FWC Lionfish Challenge Submission form must be filled out and sent to Lionfish@MyFWC.com.

Commercial – catches are submitted via electronic trip tickets. The trip tickets must include the harvester’s name, date of harvest, amount harvested (pounds), and the harvester’s signature.

Lionfish Challenge Features

Bi-weekly raffles will be held, and all qualified participants will be eligible to win.

A new component this year will be monthly Mini-Challenges. The winners will be announced each month and rewarded with substantial prizes.

The winners of the Lionfish Challenge will be announced at the Lionfish Removal and Awareness Festival on Sept. 11-13 at the HarborWalk Village in Destin. You can register for the 2020 Lionfish Challenge and find more information at FWCReefRangers.com/Lionfish-Challenge. Questions regarding the challenge can be sent to Lionfish@MyFWC.com.

 

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Reef To Rainforest

Reef to Rainforest Media, LLC is the publisher of award-winning magazines and books in the fields of aquarium keeping, aquatics, and marine science. It is the English-language publisher of CORAL Magazine and is based in Shelburne, Vermont, USA.

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