Mote to host fifth Sarasota Lionfish Derby
Mote Marine Laboratory and Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF) are teaming up to help combat invasive lionfish that are taking over the Gulf of Mexico. Get ready for the July 6-8 Sarasota Lionfish Derby hosted by Mote, an environmentally beneficial event that helps divers harvest lionfish and provides public education. Join local chefs for a lionfish tasting competition, tickets available for $15 per person.
Lionfish Derbies are an important way to harvest large numbers of this invasive species that has spread along the eastern Atlantic coast, Columbia to Escambia counties. Derbies help divers harvest lionfish and provide public education.
This year’s event will be based at Mote, with a captain's meeting on July 6, lionfish hunting July 7 in the beautiful Gulf of Mexico — tournament boundaries are defined as Collier County to Escambia County — and the lionfish weigh-in July 8 at Mote Marine Laboratory. Cost to participate in the Derby is $120.00 per team (minimum 2 people per team, maximum 4 people). The public is invited to join Mote scientists and derby participants at the weigh-in for educational dissections and lionfish tastings on Sunday.