Lionfish Category - Lack of Participation - Pensacola Fishing Forum

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Old 06-17-2014, 12:19 PM   #1
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Default Lionfish Category - Lack of Participation

Any SCUBA types want to comment on the lack of participation in the Lionfish categories in last weekend's tournaments?

The Hargreaves had zero (0) entries and the FloraBama winner's count was 45. (Very low from what I've read on this forum.)

Bad timing, prizes too low, bad locations, bad advertising???


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"....during the public comment period that followed, comments were overwhelmingly opposed to the proposal. As a result, NOAA fisheries reopened the public comment period for and additional 15 days, but there was no change to the results. The regional administrator of NOAA Fisheries announced that the recreational greater amberjack season will close for June and July as scheduled..."
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Old 06-17-2014, 01:08 PM   #2
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I think it comes down to the fact that killing them is really just a public service. We are starting to see some larger ones, but you'd still have to shoot 30-40 of them to yield the amount of meat from one nice Snapper or AJ. Then, of course, there are the venomous fins to deal with. On the plus side, the meat is pretty tasty. They're simply just not worth the hassle.
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Old 06-17-2014, 01:57 PM   #3
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I personally couldn't find any information on the category like what we were shooting for most , biggest , and what the prizes were , the Gulf Breeze fishing rodeo this year added several spearfishing categories along with lionfish which made it more appealing. just my thoughts .
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Old 06-17-2014, 04:28 PM   #4
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bad timing, the K-crew was tired from killing 518 lionfish the week before. dont want to do this every weekend...
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Old 06-17-2014, 08:34 PM   #5
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I personally saw lion fish at the Hargreaves, so to say zero must be of some kind of miscommunication. BUT, the weather was too rough to go out on Friday for me, the few hours I had on Saturday were dedicated to fishing inshore with my son. So I didn't dive at all. But one thing to note is that it was the ONLY spearfish category, so to go do a day of hook and line and make a dive just for lion fish is taking a big chance at wasting a lot of time. It was a $100 prize for lionfish, that would have been worth the trip to go for me.
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Old 06-17-2014, 09:19 PM   #6
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The lion fish you saw was from the biologist girls that were there I talked to them I couldn't believe no one brought any in ? I had planned on diving but my fishing partner rented tanks night before then shows up at ramp with no tanks!!
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Old 06-18-2014, 06:13 AM   #7
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The truth of the matter is most likely people are realizing that there is nothing that can be done to defeat Mother nature and the lionfish are here to stay. Kill a lot of them and they will repopulate more. When they reach a sustainable level they will slow down on reproducing just like where they are everywhere else in the world.
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Old 06-18-2014, 10:45 AM   #8
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Thanks for the comments and thanks for the clarification Fishmaster.

I'll pass them on to the Rodeo committee.

There was a $100 prize for most brought to the scale and a $100 prize if an angler caught one.

I don't think the intent was to create another spearfishing tournament, just another category for those that dive and fish and an incentive to harvest lionfish.

As a non-SCUBA type, all I've heard is how bad they are and taking everything over. I was shocked when only 45 won one tourney and 0 were brought to another.
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"....during the public comment period that followed, comments were overwhelmingly opposed to the proposal. As a result, NOAA fisheries reopened the public comment period for and additional 15 days, but there was no change to the results. The regional administrator of NOAA Fisheries announced that the recreational greater amberjack season will close for June and July as scheduled..."
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:55 PM   #9
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We appreciate the effort but its hard to do both scuba & pole fishing in a tourney. as a diver, would I have been allowed to weigh other fish than lionfish? if not then $100 for "most lionfish" is typically not worth the expense & work just to have somebody beat you by 1 fish and you get nothing. Our fuel bill last tourney was $90 a piece for 3 divers over 2 days and that just fuel & not the air/gas we used & other costs associated with a tourney inc. entry fee...In MBT's Guns&Hoses tourney last week, the 1st prize there for me was a $400 computer but had the draw been better I could have won a $700 BC system.. and combined with higher payouts for 2nd & 3rd in all categories then it was worth it....also, had a cobia or HUGE snapper or other specific fish had swam by I could place in other categories as well.... If you want input, them pm me and I'd be happy to chat with you for future tourney considerations. again, thanks and good luck...
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Old 06-18-2014, 03:42 PM   #10
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Thanks for including a lionfish category.

I can't speak for other divers. However, it would be nice if there were more ways for spear fishermen to win at the tournament.

Currently there are only a handful of hard-core lionfish killers in our area. Folks like "No Worries" and "FireFishVideo" can kill 100-200 lionfish each day. Many of these folks participated in the MBT tournament the weekend before and were worn out and/or needed a break. So timing may have been part of the problem.

With time I expect more divers will target lionfish.


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