[dropcap]O[/dropcap]n Saturday, September 12, a dozen local divers took to the water to help address the invasive lionfish and to also help the Fort Pierce Police’s K9 unit raise some money to add another dog to their force. The Treasure Coast Lionfish Safari committee signed on to help when the police safari teams became involved in training leaving them with sponsors, but no divers. The event was kept alive and the results of the day’s activities were: 175 lionfish ranging from 4-inches to 16.5-inches that were removed and documented.
The goal was to raise some money for a new dog. With that as a premise, we organized our dive teams, and instructed them this was “for the dogs.” Teams could retain their catch and sell it as a cash prize after weigh-in and documentation and either keep that money or donate it to the cause. Pelican Seafood Market told us this represented a $1750 value. The winning team was provided with a 50 air fill card from Dive Oddysea, a $300 value. And the raffle proceeds and entrance fees were given to the cause that represented another $205.
We thank all the participants and sponsors for their help in this fantastic way to remove lionfish and help the Fort Pierce Police.
On June 10-12, 2016, the 4th annual Treasure Coast Lionfish Safari will be held at the Riverwalk in historic downtown Fort Pierce. For more information, visit www.TreasureCoastLionfishSafari.com.