It was another great Lion Fish Tournament held this past Saturday, March 26, 2011, following the successful first tournament that took place in January of this year. Once again the Coral Reef Alliance and the Hol Chan Marine Reserve (in collaboration with Wahoo’s Lounge and the San Pedro Tour Guide Association) organized a great tournament as a means to control the invasive Lion Fish population in Belizean waters.
Fishermen, tour guides, divers and the public were once again invited to participate in the tournament. All the activity and weighing station was centered at the beachfront at Wahoo’s Lounge at the Spindrift Hotel. Official weighing commenced at 3:00 p.m. and ended at 5:00 p.m. The fish were counted, measured and fishing devices such as spears and fishnets were checked for approval.
On the beach, tourists flocked to the demonstration table set up to show how to properly handle, clean, fillet and ready the lionfish for cooking. The grilling of the Lion Fish fillet started after the 5p.m. deadline and there was plenty of free fish for everybody who was interested in sampling. There was a total of 791 Lion Fish caught this time around.
Catching the smallest Lion Fish this year was 13-year-old Tino Campos who caught the 5 cm fish with two plastic cups. He was anxious all throughout the tournament hoping that no one else would come with a smaller fish. In the end he was a very happy camper. The largest Lion Fish was caught by Humberto Torres of the Amigos del Mar team. Congratulations to all the winners.
Below are the results and prizes of the second Lion Fish Tournament.
1. First Place Team (Most Fish) – Amigos del Mar (264 Lion Fish)
$1,500 Boat Cushions (Sew What)
$250 Fuel Voucher (Fools)
$50 Bar Tab (Wahoo’s Lounge)
$50 Dinner (Caliente)
Second Place – FOOLS Fraternal Order of Lionfish Slayers (233)
$200 Gift (Rojo Lounge)
2 Seatrek Trip (Discovery Expeditions)
2 Dinner (Caroline’s Fine Cooking)
2 Wednesday Buffet at Jambel (Steve Bowen)
Third Place – Hol Chan Alliance (153)
Two round trip (Tropic Air)
2. First Place Individual (Most Fish) – Gil Nuñez (62)
Flight to Placencia (Maya Island Air)
Trip to Laughing Bird (Sea Horse D.S.)
Three Course lunch – Mathieu’s Delicatessen
Second Place Individual – Island Divers (50)
2 Kayak Exp. (Discovery Expeditions)
$50 Bar Tab (Road Kill Bar)
Third Place Individual – Tino Campos (16)
Bottle of Wine (Wine de Vine)
3. First Place Largest – Amigos del Mar (42cm)
$200 (Don Listwin)
4. First Place Smallest – Tino Campos (5cm)
$200 (Don Listwin)