Mote to host finals for new catch-and-release tournament

 

Mote to host finals for new catch-and-release tournament

 

Date: April 20, 2010
by: Robin Hartill | Community Editor

 
 

A new catch-and-release only competition will support shark protection while providing the action of a traditional fishing tournament.

In the new Guy Harvey Ultimate Shark Challenge, participants will compete by catching sharks, and scientists will tag the sharks for conservation research purposes to learn more about the animals’ habits in the wild. When the sharks are tagged, the public will be able to follow the sharks’ travels on the Internet for at least one year.

A qualifying round will take place from April 30 through May 2, at Burnt Store Marina in Lee County, which will be followed by a grand championship from May 21-23 at Mote Marine Laboratory.

The tournament was developed last year when Sean Paxton and his brother, Brooks, known as the “Shark Brothers,” approached Robert Hueter, director of Mote’s Center for Shark Research and founder of the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation, about the idea of a catch-and-release shark tournament.

“This project will provide a breakthrough in collaborative research involving the marine science and recreational fishing communities,” Hueter said in a prepared statement. “The fishermen deserve great credit for embracing this new approach. By working together to develop a 21st-century, conservation-oriented alternative to the more traditional kill tournament, the Mote Center for Shark Research and tournament organizers hope to provide a national model for the responsible use of marine resources.”

For information, go to TheUltimateSharkChallenge.com.

Contact Robin Hartill at rhartill@yourobserver.com.
 

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