The "If you Can't Beat 'em, Eat 'em" Spearfishing Tournament will be 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.

**official rules and regulations and flyer are at the bottom***

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;
  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 Spearfishing tournament is a 10 day event that begins with an educational forum at the Bistro by the Sea, a local restaurant in Carteret County. Participants in the tournament will learn about the origins of the lionfish epidemic, discover issues associated with the epidemic, and learn how to properly spearfish and collect lionfish without being envenomated by their venomous spines.

Special scuba diving charters have been set aside during the weekends that will take participants to locations that are known to be overrun with lionfish. Additionally, the meat that will be collected as part of the tournament will be given to the Bistro-by-the-Sea so that they can prepare the lionfish for the participants' enjoyment. All of these activities work to educate the public on the facts of the lionfish and their possible addition to a dinner menu.

Contributions and promotional materials can be sent to:

ECARA – "Can't beat 'em, Eat 'em"
414 Orange St.
Beaufort, NC 28516

If you Can't beat 'em, eat 'em
1st ECARA/ Careteret Catch annual Lionfish/Lobster Tournament

May 31st – June 9th, 2013
Carteret County, NC

3 categories:
Lionfish – Total Numbers - $500.00
Lobster – Carapace Length - $250.00
Misc. Edible Fish – Total Weight - $250.00

Training – May 31st
Special Charter – June 1st & 2nd
Contact: Discovery Diving, (252) 728-2265

The Beat 'em or Eat 'em Inner Level Competition.

  1. Entry fee for the main tournament will be $20.00 per person.  The entry for the Inner Tournament is $50 per category and may be entered individually or as a team.
  2. If entered as a team, each team member must also be entered as an individual in the main tournament.
  3. The Inner tournament must be entered for each Category (Lionfish, Lobster and Misc Edible Fish)
  4. The Inner Tournament prize is cash only and will consist of 50% of all money raised by the inner tourney going to the winner of the Inner Tourney.  Of the remaining 50%, 25% will go to ECARA and 25% will go to Carteret Catch.

*** To better distribute prizes this year we will pull random prizes during the awards ceremony from the raffle tickets given out during the weigh in each day.
*** Every fish you weigh will earn you a raffle ticket that can win you a prize during the awards ceremony but you must have the ticket in your possession to win.




6 to 18 month no interest financing available,

give us a call or email us about our new

financing option for your future purchases!


Contact Information

414 Orange Street
Beaufort, NC 28516
(252) 728-2265