Lionfish Challenge

2019 Lionfish Challenge

Lionfish Challenge Removal Incentive Program

Goal: To encourage and reward recreational and commercial divers for removing lionfish from Florida waters.


Timeline: May 18, 2019 (Lionfish Removal and Awareness Day) through Sept. 2, 2019 (Labor Day)

Overview

  • Statewide program
  • Recreational and commercial participant categories
  • Checkpoints located statewide for harvest submission
  • Tiered prize system to encourage continued harvest
  • Cash prizes for largest and smallest lionfish

How to Qualify

  • All participants required to register prior to participation.

Recreational Category

  • Harvest 25 or more lionfish
  • Submit photo of harvest
    • Photo requirement: Include harvester name, date of harvest, and signature. Lionfish must be displayed clearly for staff to obtain an accurate individual count.
    • Note: FWC reserves the right to deny submission if participant fails to fulfill the requirements for verification as described above.
  • Submit tails (after first 25) to checkpoint (listed below and online)
    • Place tails in a plastic sandwich bag(s): include harvester name, phone number, date of harvest, and number of tails.
    • Complete the 2019 FWC Lionfish Challenge Submission Form. Checkpoints will retain bags for verification by FWC staff.
    • Send a copy of the Submission Form to Lionfish@MyFWC.com and keep an additional copy with tails.

Commercial Category

  • Participants with active Saltwater Products License and lionfish sales within the last year will automatically be included in this category.
  • Submit photo of electronic trip tickets
    • Trip ticket requirement: Harvester name, date of harvest, amount harvested (lbs.), and signature

Rewards

  • All qualified participants (submission of 25 lionfish/lbs.) receive:
    • Commemorative coin
      • Resource-based incentive: 2019 coin is valid for 1 spiny lobster per person per day in addition to the daily bag limit during the 2019 sport season (July 24-25)
    • 2019 Lionfish Challenge performance fishing shirt
    • Entry in raffle
    • Feature in FWC Lionfish Hall of Fame
  • Tiered Prizes
    • 75 lionfish (or 150 lbs.) – customized neck gaiter and reusable heat pack for stings
    • 150 lionfish (or 300 lbs.) – customized beach towel, Engel Coolers silipint cup, and fillet knife
    • 250 lionfish (or 600 lbs.) – Costa sunglasses, Neritic Diving polespear, and TurtleSkin puncture-resistant gloves
    • 400 lionfish (or 1,200 lbs.) – customized 85 quart Engel Cooler
  • Raffle Drawings
  • Cash Prizes

Lionfish King/Queen: Most lionfish (by number) submitted by a recreational participant

  • Lionfish King/Queen trophy
  • Feature article in FWC’s January 2020 Saltwater Regulations publication
  • Featured prominently in the FWC Lionfish Hall of Fame
  • HP 100 SCUBA cylinder
  • $500 for SCUBA air fills

2nd Place Lionfish King/Queen

  • HP 100 SCUBA cylinder
  • $250 for SCUBA air fills

3rd Place Lionfish King/Queen

  • HP 100 SCUBA cylinder
  • $100 for SCUBA air fills

Commercial Champion: Most lionfish (by weight) submitted by a commercial participant

  • Lionfish King/Queen trophy
  • Feature article in FWC’s January 2020 Saltwater Regulations publication
  • Featured prominently in the FWC Lionfish Hall of Fame
  • HP 100 SCUBA cylinder
  • $500 for SCUBA air fills

2nd Place Commercial Champion

  • HP 100 SCUBA cylinder
  • $250 for SCUBA air fills

3rd Place Commercial Champion

  • HP 100 SCUBA cylinder
  • $100 for SCUBA air fills

All participants must register for the 2019 Lionfish Challenge prior to submitting lionfish to the program. The registration form will be available early May 2019.

How to submit your harvest to the 2019 Lionfish Challenge:

If you are a Recreational participant:

  • Instructions for harvest submission up to 25 lionfish:
    • Take photo of lionfish and submit through the electronic Harvest Submission form.
      • Photo requirement: Include harvester name, date of harvest, and signature. Lionfish must be displayed clearly for staff to obtain an accurate count.
  • Instructions for harvest submission after first 25 lionfish:
    • Remove tails from lionfish and bring to a local checkpoint
      • Tail submission requirement: Remove tails and place in a plastic sandwich bag. Include harvester name, phone number, date of harvest, and number of tails.
    • Checkpoint staff must complete the 2019 FWC Lionfish Challenge Submission Form and send a copy to Lionfish@MyFWC.com.
    • Checkpoints will retain bag of tails and a copy of the Submission Form for verification by FWC staff.

If you are a Commercial participant:

  • Submit photo or copy of trip ticket through the electronic Harvest Submission form.
    • Trip ticket requirement: Include harvester name, date of harvest, amount harvested (lbs.), and signature.

Note: FWC reserves the right to deny submission if participant fails to fulfill the requirements for verification as described above.

Purpose: Recreational harvesters, after submission of their first 25 lionfish, must remove lionfish tails, place in plastic bag(s), complete the 2019 Lionfish Challenge Submission Form and bring to local checkpoint for verification of harvest. Checkpoints will retain tails and send a copy of the form to Lionfish@MyFWC.com for harvest submission.

Interested in participating as a 2019 Lionfish Challenge checkpoint? Contact Lionfish@MyFWC.com for more information and instructions.

View photos from the 2016-2018 Lionfish Challenge

Interested in sponsoring or participating as a checkpoint?