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.

TBF is proud to introduce the Hawaii Regional 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 Tag Data Reports must be entered online or mailed to by TBF no later than November 15.

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 or online at 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, spearfish 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:  Tag cards should be submitted online through TBF’s database as soon as possible. You’re also welcome to submit physical cards via mail, but if you wait until the end of the competition year to mail your cards, you run the risk of not having them reach TBF by the deadline. Entering cards online is the fastest and most secure method of submitting tags. 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 Captain


Awards are presented to youth anglers under the age of 18 who tag the most billfish of any species within each age category after having met the minimum of 3 fish. To enter the competition, all youth anglers MUST include their date of birth within their online profile of the tagging database. If submitting physical cards via mail, write in the date of birth in the space provided next to their name. Youth anglers must be active TBF members to win, but need not be members to send in cards.


Awards are presented to the female anglers who tag and/or release the most billfish of any species within each age category, after having met the minimum of 5 fish.


TBF recognizes the valuable contribution of mates in both the release and tagging of billfish. A mate must be nominated by their winning captain to be eligible for an award. Mate awards are distributed during TBF’s annual awards ceremony.

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.