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FWC: The 2024 Lionfish Challenge Begins Today

Florida - Friday May 24, 2024: Everyone’s favorite conservation event of the year is about to kick off! The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has announced the 2024 Lionfish Challenge.

Lionfish are native to the Indo-Pacific, but are now established along the southeast coast of the U.S., the Caribbean, and in parts of the Gulf of Mexico. Invasive lionfish threaten native fish and the environment in U.S. Atlantic coastal waters. This invasive species has been causing extinctions of native plants and animals, reduced biodiversity, and it is competing with native organisms for limited resources while altering native habitats.

As we kick off the nineth year of the Lionfish Challenge, our goal remains the same: remove as many lionfish as we can in just three months. Are you up for the Challenge?

The Lionfish Challenge is a free summer-long lionfish tournament open to recreational and commercial competitors of all ages around the state of Florida. More than 195,000 lionfish have been removed as a part of this challenge since it began in 2016.

Tournament Details

Timeline: May 24 to Sept. 2.

Categories: Participants will compete in either the commercial or the recreational division with grand prizes to the top competitors in each division.

Prizes will be awarded in tiers as follows:
Tier 1- Harvest 25 lionfish (recreational category) or 50 pounds of lionfish (commercial category).

  • Tier 2- Harvest 75 lionfish (recreational category) or 100 pounds of lionfish (commercial category).
  • Tier 3- Harvest 150 lionfish (recreational category) or 200 pounds of lionfish (commercial category).
  • Tier 4- Harvest 300 lionfish (recreational category) or 400 pounds of lionfish (commercial category).
  • Tier 5- Harvest 600 lionfish (recreational category) or 800 pounds of lionfish (commercial category).

To read the full tournament rules and register, visit

Keep up with the challenge on our Facebook page: