Statewide Lionfish Control Efforts
Get Involved to Control Florida's Invasive Lionfish
Are you a diver, seafood lover, or passionate about the environment? Learn about ways to support control efforts by removing lionfish, eating lionfish, and educating others about the effects of lionfish.
The current most-effective way to remove lionfish is by divers using spearfishing equipment.
Ways for divers to get involved:
- Participate in a lionfish tournament.
- Lionfish tournaments can significantly reduce local lionfish populations and they are a great way to meet other divers and get involved in the Florida lionfish community.
- To apply for the 2020-21 Tournament Sponsorship Program, send a FWC Lionfish Tournament Assistance Application to Lionfish@MyFWC.com.
- Participate in one of our Lionfish Harvest Programs.
- Recreational Lionfish Harvest Program 21-22: Provide an incentive for dive charters and dive shops to conduct lionfish-specific harvesting trips in an effort to increase the number of divers safely and confidently removing lionfish and to increase the number of lionfish removed from Florida waters.
- Commercial Lionfish Harvest Program 21-22: Divers who possess a Saltwater Products License and sell their harvested lionfish commercially will receive compensation for the weight of their harvest.
- Sell lionfish harvest to the commercial market.
- Divers must possess a Saltwater Products License to sell commercially-harvested lionfish to a licensed Saltwater Wholesale Dealer. Learn more about FWC’s Commercial Saltwater Licenses.
- Wholesale dealer interested in selling lionfish? Contact us to be added to our list of Florida Lionfish Wholesale Dealers.
- Organize a lionfish removal event from an area where spearfishing is otherwise prohibited.
- FWC issues permits to dive clubs, tournaments, and other organized events to remove lionfish from areas near public fishing piers, jetties, or areas that otherwise prohibit spearfishing activities. Contact Lionfish@MyFWC.com to learn more and apply for a permit.
- Lionfish have become a popular food fish. The fillets are firm, white, and flakey in texture and have a mild, non-fishy taste that is comparable to snapper, black sea bass, or hogfish.
- While the spines of lionfish do contain venom, the flesh of a lionfish is not venomous or poisonous.
- Watch a video on how to safely fillet a lionfish.
- Lionfish can be found at many restaurants, seafood markets, and grocery stores across Florida. View a list of restaurants that previously or currently serve lionfish.
Help educate others to increase awareness about invasive lionfish and their effects on native species and habitats.
- Share FWC’s lionfish brochure or contact Lionfish@MyFWC.com to request copies to distribute at your public facility.
- Donate to Florida’s Lionfish Outreach and Control Programs by supporting the Fish and Wildlife Foundation of Florida.
- Visit a lionfish event near you to participate in awareness and control efforts.
We want to see photos of your lionfish harvests!
2021 Lionfish Tournament and Event Calendar
|February 1st- May 13th, 2021||Destin, Fl||Emerald Coast Open Pretournamentfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|March 18th, 2021||Lakeland, FL||Lionfish Invasion Presentationemail@example.com|
|April 23rd-25th, 2021||Key Largo, FL||REEF Earth Day Lionfish Derby||alli@REEF.org|
|May 14th-16th, 2021||Destin, FL||Emerald Coast Openfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|May 15th-16th, 2021||Destin, FL||Lionfish Removal & Awareness Festival||Lionfish@MyFWC.com|
|June 5th-6th, 2021||St. Petersburg, FL||2021 Tampa Bay Spearfishing Challengeemail@example.com|
|June 11th-13th, 2021||Ft. Pierce, FL||Treasure Coast Lionfish Safarifirstname.lastname@example.org|
|June 12th, 2021||Miami, FL||Summer Series Miami Lionfish Derbyemail@example.com|
|July 15th, 2021||Lakeland, FL||Lionfish Invasion Presentationfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|July 17th, 2021||Miami, FL||Summer Series Miami Lionfish Derbyemail@example.com|
|July 28th-29th, 2021||Key Largo||Lobstermaniafirstname.lastname@example.org|
|August 5th-7th, 2021||St. Augustine, FL||2021 North Florida Shootoutemail@example.com|
|August 14th, 2021||Miami, FL||Summer Series Miami Lionfish Derbyfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|August 15th, 2021||Deerfield Beach, FL||DX Divers Lionfish Derby|
|September 9th-12th, 2021||Islamorada, FL||Florida Keys Lionfish Festival and Tournament||alli@REEF.org|
|October 2nd-3rd, 2021||Navarre, FL||Navarre Fishing Rodeo|
Add your tournament to our calendar!
Email the tournament name, date, location, contact information and tournament website to Lionfish@MyFWC.com.