Last month, REEF kicked off our 2018 Lionfish Derby series at the Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science in Miami. Four teams competed on June 9 and 10 to bring in a total of 309 fish. The largest lionfish caught was 411mm (just over 16 inches) and the smallest was 112mm (about 4.5 inches.) We have two more derbies coming up this month - in Sarasota at Mote Marine Lab and Aquarium on July 6 - 8, and in Ft. Lauderdale at 15th St. Fisheries on July 13 - 14, and a few more later this summer and fall. Details are below, and at All of the scoring, awards, lionfish tastings, and festivities at both events will take place as teams start to come in with their catch. All festivities are free open to the public.

For all derbies in this year’s series, cash prizes will be given to 1st through 10th place for most lionfish and 1st through 3rd place for the biggest and smallest. We have also introduced several new prize categories, include a golden fish award with participating teams eligible to win $1,000 cash and a first timers category. A culinary competition will also be taking place on derby day at the Sarasota event. This is a people’s choice competition - participating chefs create a lionfish dish of their choosing and individuals who have purchased a ticket beforehand can vote for their favorite.

July Derby Details:

Sarasota Derby

Captain’s Meeting: Friday, July 6 @ Mote Marine Lab

Derby: Sunrise on July 6 until noon on July 7. $120 per team. 2-4 person teams.

For more information and registration:

Ft. Lauderdale Derby

Captain’s Meeting: Friday, July 13 @ 15th St. Fisheries

Derby: Sunrise on July 14 until 5:00pm. $120 per team. 2-4 person teams.

For more information and registration: