Skip to main content

Fla. Lionfish Removal Effort Reaches 12,000-Plus

Fla. Lionfish Removal Effort Reaches 12,000-Plus
Florida has been targeting invasive lionfish to be removed from state waters. (Photo courtesy of Florida Fish and Wildlife)

As another successful Lionfish Removal and Awareness weekend wrapped up in Florida, a new Lionfish Challenge began.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission news release

Residents and visitors across Florida enjoyed another weekend of learning about and helping remove lionfish as they participated in events during the third annual Lionfish Removal and Awareness Day, May 20 (first Saturday after Mother's Day).

Lionfish are a nonnative, invasive species that have a potential negative impact on native species and habitat. (Photo courtesy of Florida Fish and Wildlife)

More than 4,000 people attended the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) two-day festival in Pensacola, where visitors got to taste lionfish prepared by celebrity chefs, watch fillet demonstrations, participate in family-friendly games, visit art and conservation booths and much more.

Despite three statewide tournaments being cancelled due to weather, over 12,000 lionfish were removed from Florida waters, including 3,868 lionfish that were removed during two days of rough weather from the Pensacola-based Lionfish World Championship.

"Those that are passionate about removing lionfish from Florida waters really showed their dedication this weekend," said Jessica McCawley, director of FWC's Division of Marine Fisheries Management. "The weather was not ideal, and yet the festivals were still busy with people excited to learn about and taste lionfish. We always want to encourage safety first and foremost, and we're glad everyone was able to safely travel offshore to remove a significant number of lionfish."

The Lionfish Challenge, a removal incentive program, also started May 20, and runs through Sept. 4. Nearly 150 people have already registered to participate in the statewide Challenge, which rewards lionfish harvesters with prizes such as T-shirts, tumblers, pole spears, an extra spiny lobster per day during the two-day sport season, and much more.

Think you have what it takes to be crowned the next Lionfish King/Queen or Commercial Champion? Sign up and learn more today by visiting MyFWC.com/Lionfish.

Lionfish Removal and Awareness Day was created by FWC Commissioners to raise awareness about lionfish — a nonnative, invasive species that have a potential negative impact on native species and habitat.

Florida's Lionfish Challenge, a removal incentive program, started May 20 and runs through Sept. 4. (Image courtesy of Florida Fish and Wildlife)

The FWC thanks all of the sponsors and organizations across the state that helped make this Lionfish Removal and Awareness Day event a success.

Recommended


Remember, lionfish and other exotic pets that can no longer be cared for should never be released into Florida waters or lands. To learn more about where to surrender an exotic pet for adoption, visit MyFWC.com/WildlifeHabitats and click on "Nonnative Species" and "Exotic Pet Amnesty Program."

Statewide Lionfish Events Removal Totals

  • 3,868 — Lionfish World Championship — Pensacola (plus 150 submitted late).
  • 2,175 — Lionfish World Championship Pre-Tournament — Pensacola.
  • 4,618 — Northeast Florida Lionfish Blast — Jacksonville (monthlong event).
  • 929 — Lion Tamer Tournament — Panama City Beach (plus another 354 removed prior to the event).
  • 72 - Force-E Scuba Centers Lionfish Removal Day  — Pompano.

How to Filet a Lionfish

https://youtu.be/vqAhXceCYUk

Via Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission YouTube


Other Lionfish info: 

Facebook:

Website:




GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Recent Videos

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Gear

New Shimano Baitcasters

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Hunting

Incredible Turkey Audio: Tommy Allen Punches his Minnesota Tag IN THE SNOW

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Destinations

First Turkey Ever: Perfect Conditions Make for a Short Hunt

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Fishing

Bass Crash Course: Bass Froggin' Game Plan

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Videos

What to Know Before Going Off-Road

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Learn

Off-Road Safety Tips and Techniques

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Gear

The Right Tires for Off-Roading

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Learn

Bass Crash Course: Shallow-Water Power Lures

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Destinations

Minnesota Double Down: First Visit to New Farm Goes Perfectly

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Fishing

Bass Crash Course: Bass Fishing in the Wind

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Hunting

She Kills The Biggest Bird of the Year

Host Shane Beilue covers three things to look for when considering square bills in shallow water.
Fishing

Bass Crash Course: Unlock the Patterns Squarebill Crankbaits

Game & Fish Magazine Covers Print and Tablet Versions

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

Buy Digital Single Issues

Magazine App Logo

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Game & Fish App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Game & Fish stories delivered right to your inbox every week.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Enjoying What You're Reading?

Get a Full Year
of Guns & Ammo
& Digital Access.

Offer only for new subscribers.

Subscribe Now