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Lionfish Derby


Tobago divers take on the lionfish problem:

On July 4th, both Scuba and freedivers removed 280 invasive Lionfish from the waters surrounding Tobago, during the 2nd Tobago Lionfish Derby, hosted by the Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA). The two-day event attracted seven teams of divers and 22 freedivers, competing for over $25,000.00 in cash and prizes in the categories, Largest, Smallest, and Most, Lionfish captured. There was also a challenge prize for the greatest total weight of Lionfish landed.

The results for each category are as follows:

SCUBA CATEGORY

Largest

1st Extra Divers

2nd R&Sea Divers

3rd Undersea Tobago

Smallest

1st Undersea Tobago

2nd R&Sea Divers

3rd Extra Divers

Most

1st Undersea Tobago (65)

2nd R&Sea Divers (58)

3rd Extra Divers (29)

FREEDIVER CATEGORY

Largest

1st Keishon Walker

2nd Othneil Ramsay

3rd Rajesh Mohan

Smallest

1st Stephanie da Silva

2nd Alvin James

3rd Michael Hernandez

Most

1st Stefan Lue Chin

2nd Keishon Walker

3rd Othneil Ramsay

UNDER 18 CATEGORY

Largest

1st Elvaugn Williams

Smallest

1st Elvaugn Williams

Most

1st Elvaugn Williams

GREATEST TOTAL WEIGHT OF LIONFISH

Undersea Tobago 19.60 kg

The largest Lionfish was a new record for Tobago at 40.4 cm. Two of these giants were captured, one by the Extra Divers scuba team, and the other by freediver Keishon Walker. Derby officials heard rumours of competitors attempting to catch much larger lionfish, but they got away. Maybe, next derby guys.

The second day of the derby saw everyone gathered for the prize-giving and much anticipated tasting of Lionfish which were deliciously prepared by four restaurants in Castara - Cascreole, The Boat House, Cheno’s Coffee Shop, and Sherma’s Café. The fish were served curried, stewed, fried and grilled, all eagerly sampled by participants and onlookers. The objectives of the Lionfish Derby are both to remove invasive Lionfish as well as promote public awareness of this growing ecological problem to our marine environment.

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