The Hawaiian Islands are undoubtedly a special place for many reasons. In the eyes of many anglers, it is unique for being the only place in the world where a grander marlin has been caught during every month of the year. After the success of TBF’s regional competitions in the Gulf of Mexico and South Florida, TBF has created the Hawaiian Tag & Release Regional Competition to recognize the great fishing, captains, anglers and crews who fish there. It couldn’t come at a moment sooner after one of the best billfish seasons on record in 2015.
For 2016, TBF is introducing the Hawaiian Islands Regional Marlin Tag & Release Competition that creates another region in addition to its year long International Tag & Release Competition. Award categories are for only black, blue and striped marlin and only these species will count toward overall award categories.
COMPETITION DATES: November 1 – October 31 of the following year.
DEADLINE: All Tagging Data Report Cards must be received by TBF no later than November 15th, whether via mail or online at www.tagbillfish.org.
ELIGIBILITY: Anglers, captains and mates MUST be a current TBF member to receive an award based on their submitted Tagging Data Report and Release Notification Cards. Regardless of membership, all data from every card is valuable for billfish research and membership is not required if you wish submit your tag & release data from anywhere in the world. You can check your membership status or join TBF by calling (954) 938-0150 ext. 106. If you have registered with our online tag and release database, you can see if your membership is current in your profile page and join or renew at www.billfish.org. Charter captains must have a valid captain’s license and all necessary licenses for a documented charter vessel. Tags must be deployed on the same vessel in order to be counted for charter categories. Overall tag categories are calculated as the total number of eligible species reported tagged and released by a captain or angler.
ELIGIBLE SPECIES: Only blue marlin, black marlin and striped marlin are eligible species and categories. Winners will be the angler or captain that tags the greatest number of eligible species combined for the respective category.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Cards should be submitted to TBF as soon as possible or entered online at www.tagbillfish.org after tagging or releasing a fish. If you wait until the end of the competition year to send your cards, you run the risk of not having your cards reach TBF by the deadline. TBF also reserves the right to disqualify any participant if circumstances indicate there is reason to question reports.
TAGGING – Captains and Anglers Awards are presented to those who tag the most billfish of each species within each category after having met the 5 fish minimum with the exception of youth anglers (see Youth rules below).
Top Tagging Lady Angler
Top Tagging Angler
Top Tagging Junior Anglers
Top Tagging Private Captain
Top Tagging Charter Captain
PRIVATE VS. CHARTER
Any records submitted for eligible species tagged and released on a registered charter boat are only eligible for charter captain and charter boat categories. Charter captains must have a valid captain’s license and all necessary licenses for a documented charter vessel. Tag and release must be deployed on the same vessel in order to be counted for charter categories. Any tag records for billfish caught during a non-for-hire trip, but on a registered charter boat, are only eligible for charter categories. Proper documentation and proof of charter status must be presented if requested by TBF.
Awards are presented to youth anglers who tag the most billfish of any species within each age category after having met the minimum of 3 fish. Categories include: ages 8 & younger, 9-10, 11-12, 13-15 and 16-17. (Please note: To enter the competition all youth anglers MUST write in their date of birth next to their name or in the space provided, or if reporting via tagbillfish.org please include date of birth when creating user profile.) Youth anglers must be active TBF members to win.
Awards are presented to the female anglers who tag and release the most billfish.
TBF recognizes the valuable contribution of mates in both the release and tagging of billfish through TBF’s Mate Recognition Program, a cumulative, on-going program that awards mates with a pair of Costa Sunglasses and a plaque for his or her level of achievement.
Proper Tagging Procedure & Tagging at Tournaments
The post-release survival of billfish is vital and TBF urges that proper tagging procedures are used when tagging any billfish to ensure safe, healthy releases (see TBF’s Tag & Release Program brochure for more information). Improper tag placement, ‘speed tagging’ or using too much force when tagging can result in serious injury or death to the fish. For this reason TBF does not encourage tagging during tournaments. However, if a boat chooses to tag any billfish during a tournament they will be counted toward any applicable regional competition as well as the International Tag & Release Competition. All participants are encouraged to see TBF’s Tag & Release brochure for information on safe handling and proper tagging procedure.