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Lionfish tournament roaring success

The annual Groundswell Lionfish Tournament

The seventh annual Groundswell Lionfish Tournament was another roaring success this year as 92 fish were swept up from the ocean.

There were 110 lionfish hunters this year and the biggest fish caught on the day was 17½ inches, by longtime tournament supporter Bob Steinhoff.

A special Booby Prize went out to hunter Chris Gauntlett who sustained a painful lionfish sting to his hand, but won a bottle of rum in return.

The overall winners were announced at the prize-giving held at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences where a trio of fresh lionfish sushi was served by Buzz restaurant. Live music was performed by Live Wire and The Kings, followed by music from local DJs.

The overall number of fish caught was down on last year’s 135 and choppy conditions on the water could have played a part.

The organiser of the tournament, Selange Gitschner, said the event had been “absolutely incredible”.

“It has been amazing. People are going out catching lionfish all year round but this event is about the community, education and spreading the word.

“I love the mix of Bermudians you get coming to this event, all ages from east to west.”

The winners

Largest lionfish: Bob Steinhoff (17½in)

Individual: Chris Cabral

Smallest: Royal Bermuda Regiment (7.1in)

Most caught on scuba: Team Dive Bermuda (16)

Most caught free-diving: Misconduct (7)

Most caught by tech team: Ocean Support Foundation (26)

To find out more about the tournament visit: www.reefspect.com