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Lionfish derby canceled over weather concerns

The fishing is a no-go, but people can still chow down at Mote Marine on Sunday.

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  • | 10:20 a.m. July 12, 2019
  • Longboat Key
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Thanks a lot, Barry. 

The tropical storm is bringing the weather that Mote Marine Lab and Aquarium and REEF were concerned about affecting the lionfish derby this weekend. Citing inclement weather, REEF (Reef Environmental Education Foundation) has canceled the fishing aspect of the lionfish derby scheduled to begin on July 13, according to Mote Marine's public relations manager Stephannie Kettle. 

This means no captain's meeting on July 12 and no fishing and hunting lionfish in the Gulf on July 13. The folks attending the lionfish tasting event at Mote Marine on Sunday, July 14 don't have to worry — that will still happen since the fish that would have been caught in the derby would not have been the fish served on July 14. 

"The fish that will be used at Mote is already being processed," said Alli Candelmo, the invasive species program manager at REEF on July 8. "There would be no way to get 100 pounds of fresh fish ready for that event." 

That event, however, is sold out. 

The Observer previewed this event, and you can still read about the negative effect lionfish have on Gulf waters here




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