If you can't beat 'em, eat 'em Lionfish/Lobster Tournament
We need your help to make Carteret County's 5th Annual "If you Can't Beat 'em, Eat 'em" Spearfishing Tournament a success! This Tournament is a joint effort between Discovery Diving and Eastern Carolina Artificial Reef Association (ECARA).
The "If you Can't Beat 'em, Eat 'em" Spearfishing Tournament is an annual tournament to raise public awareness of the lionfish invasive species problem in the Atlantic; to develop a possible management strategy by creating the means for a sustainable commercial fishery; and to encourage the sale of locally caught seafood.
Lionfish, a native of the Indo-Pacific oceans, are an invasive species in the Atlantic Ocean and populations of these fish have been steadily moving up the Atlantic coast from Florida since the early 90's. It is native to the Indo-Pacific range, however lionfish populations have exploded here for the following reasons: 1) they have no known natural predators in the Atlantic Ocean; 2) they eat approximately half their own body weight each day, which leads to rapid growth and maturation; 3) scientists believe that the females are mature after six months and can lay about 30,000 eggs every 4 days; and 4) traditional fishing methods have not worked to harvest these fish. The combinations listed above have proven an incredibly toxic and destructive mix for the native species of grouper, snapper, and crustaceans in the fertile waters of the Atlantic Ocean. Native species are competing for grazing space and the juveniles of our native species are quickly becoming dinner for the lionfish.
This Lionfish / Lobster Tournament is a 4 day event that begins on Thursday, August 2nd and ends on Sunday, August 5th.
You can only have one lobster measured per day. The measurement of the lobster carapace will
be your rank.
You can replace that lobster carapace with a larger one on any subsequent day.
Your final rank within the lobster category will be based on your highest measuring lobster
The total number of lionfish of an entrant will be their ranking.
You can place in both categories.
The “money” is determined by the number of entry fees collected.
Each Category: 1st – 30% of money, 2nd – 10% of money, 3rd – 5% of money
Day 1: Thursday, August 2nd – Tournament begins – Weigh in 5pm – 8pm
Day 2: Friday, August 3rd – Weigh in 5pm – 8pm
Day 3: Saturday, August 4th – Weigh in 5pm – 8pm
Day 4: Sunday, August 5th – Weigh in 5pm – 8pm
Awards Ceremony 8pm
- Participant's name must be provided at time of registration with Discovery Diving Company prior to 9am on the first day of fishing. The registration fee (cash only) is $40.00, non-refundable.
- Registration may be done in person, by phone (252-728-2265) or by mail (address below) or email (
- You are not officially registered until the Entry Fee, Liability Release, and Entry forms have been received.
- This Lionfish / Lobster contest is open to everyone. Participants must show a C-card, if using Scuba, and a current CRFL, unless the participant is on a boat that has a Blanket License, at the counting / measuring.
- Entrants may pursue and attain targets by means of SCUBA, free diving, and snorkeling methods.
- Only spearguns, pole spears, and Hawaiian slings that are loaded by muscle power will be permitted. Power heads will not be permitted.
- Participants are allowed to fish / collect on any 2 of the 4 days of the tournament.
- No blowout days. No rescheduling.
- Catch must be counted / measured on the day it was taken, no hold overs or over nights. All fish must be shot within daylight hours. All lobsters must be collected in daylight hours.
- Counting / measuring times are: Thursday 5pm - 8pm, Friday 5pm - 8pm, Saturday 5pm - 8pm, and Sunday 5pm - 8pm. The catch must be at Discovery Diving during those times. The official time will be kept by Discovery Diving.
- No frozen fish or lobsters will be accepted.
- Only one lobster carapace per entrant per day will be measured. You can replace that lobster carapace with a larger one on any subsequent day.
- Any attempt to defraud or cheat in the tournament in any way will automatically disqualify the offender and all of his/her fish and / or lobsters.
- Only official counts / measurements by Discovery Diving will be accepted.
- Do not give a competitor any lionfish to be counted or a lobster carapace to be measured as their own.
- Knowledge of the local marine fishing laws and regulations is the entrant's responsibility and all laws will be strictly enforced.
- The "money" is determined by the number of entry fees collected. Prizes will be awarded accordingly:
- Lionfish – 1st - 30% of the money, 2nd - 10% of the money, 3rd - 5% of the money. Prizes will be based on the Quantity of lionfish, not weight, captured in the tournament. In the event of a tie, the decision will be determined by who had their lionfish recorded first at Discovery Diving.
- Lobster – 1st - 30% of the money, 2nd - 10% of the money, 3rd - 5% of the money will go to the lobster with the largest carapace and is limited only to the Spiny Lobster.
- You must be present to accept the awards, which will be made at 8pm on August 5th, 2018.
- The resolution to any issue will be by the management of Discovery Diving Co., Inc. and their decision will be final.
- All winners must consent to the use of their names and images for the purpose of future promotional materials.
- Tournament participants must catch under recreational limits. Tournament participants cannot operate under a commercial license during the tournament and cannot hunt under commercial size and catch limits.
- Discovery Diving is not responsible or liable for any mishaps or accidents. Entrants accept their own risk upon entering.