Most folks know we have a real issue with lionfish locally and that many community groups and agencies are trying to provide programs to help educate the public about the issue – as well as get rid of these fish. This year the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is holding a LIONFISH CHALLENGE. This is to encourage local divers to remove as many as we can. Here is how it works.
The Challenge will take place between May 14 and Sept 30, 2016.
The first 50 LF can be submitted via email – you will need
- a photo of the LF sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
- your name, date, and signature must be included on the photograph
- if you have several in one photo – place so that they can be counted easily
- include mailing address, phone, # of LF submitting, and which county they were harvested from
After the initial 50 they must be submitted to a local check point. All you need to submit are the tails – check out the link below on how to correctly remove and submit tails – these tails will be placed in a dry sandwich bag with your name, phone, date, and the submission form – this form can be found in pdf form on the link below OR at the local check point.
For each 50 you submit – your name will entered for prizes – which include items such as fishing license, fuel cards, LF harvest gear, and more
PANHANDLE PILOT PROGRAM
Specifically for the panhandle… there is another opportunity.
For every 100 LF you can have a ticket to remove 1 additional red grouper OR cobia – within state waters and must be legal lengt.
The first 10 who submit 500 LF will have an artificial reef named after them
This opportunity will be open from May 14, 2016 to May 20, 2017 is for panhandle counties only.
LOCAL CHECK POINTS
Escambia County Division of Marine Resources: 595-FISH
Bay Breeze Dive Center: 934-8363
OFFICIAL FWC LINK FOR THIS PROGRAM http://myfwc.com/fishing/saltwater/recreational/lionfish/