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This version of SharkBytes has been archived as of February 28, 2019. To search through archived articles, visit nova.edu/search. To access the new version of SharkBytes, visit sharkbytes.nova.edu.

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Division of Public Relations and Marketing Communications
Nova Southeastern University
3301 College Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33314-7796


SharkBytes Archives


Division of Public Relations and Marketing Communications
Nova Southeastern University
3301 College Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33314-7796

(954) 262-5353
(800) 541-6682 x25353
Fax: (954) 262-3954

2015 Fort Lauderdale Billfish Tournament is Almost Here – Provides Scholarships for NSU Students

Changes in Requirements Results in Removing $100k Prize This Year - Tournament Still Offers 1st, 2nd & 3rd Place Monetary Awards

2014 Fort Lauderdale Billfish Tournament

FORT LAUDERDALE-DAVIE, Fla. – This year, the organizers of the Fort Lauderdale Billfish Tournament came up with a unique “wrinkle” for the event. The idea was to “pre-tag” billfish in area waters and if a tournament angler caught one, they could be eligible to win $100,000.

Unfortunately due to additional requirements, that feature had to be scrapped. The changes that resulted in organizers pulling the plug on the $100k fish included:

  • Increase in number of sailfish to be pre-tagged (total of 10.) This would result in significant more time and expense – something tournament organizers don’t have a lot of;
  • Requirement that tagged sailfish re-caught must be measured and an approximate weight must be determined. This would require the fish to be removed from the water, which contradictory to the established Fort Lauderdale Billfish Tournament’s rules (i.e. no billfish should be removed from the water for any reason;)
  • Because fish cannot be tagged within three (3) miles of each other, there would likely be fish that would be caught and released without tagging. These fish would be unnecessarily “stressed, “ which could be detrimental to their health;
  • The winning tag would have had to be removed from sailfish, which would require the fish be removed from water, which, again, violates tournament rules;
  • Finally, and most importantly: The goal of the tournament is to raise funds for scholarships. Due to the increased expenses directly related to the aforementioned issues, keeping the $100k fish option would defeat the purpose of the tournament (potentially spend additional funds that could have gone toward scholarships.)

The tournament will still go on as planned, and it’s a great opportunity for anglers to help further the education of NSU graduate students. The 2015 Fort Lauderdale Billfish Tournament is divided into two days:

  • The Captain’s Party: 6-10 p.m. Friday, Feb. 27 at the Oceanographic Center, 8000 N. Ocean Dr., Dania Beach (inside John U. Lloyd State Park.) The cocktail reception will run from 6-10 p.m. There will be tours of the Oceanographic Center from 6 – 7 p.m. and the captain’s meeting will be held at 7 p.m.
  • Tournament Day: Saturday, Feb. 28 from either Port Everglades or the Hillsboro Inlet:
    – 6-7 a.m. check-out; 7 a.m. “lines in,” 2 p.m. “lines out;”
    – All boats weighing in or turning in billfish release cards must be visually checked in to Port Everglades or Hillsboro Inlet by 3 p.m. (Scales open at 2 p.m.) Boats will be called to the weigh-in dock by boat number, based on the order that they cleared Port Everglades Inlet, over VHF channel 78;
    – Awards Reception, Bahia Mar Fort Lauderdale Beach Hotel, 4:30-6:30 p.m.

The entry fees for the 2015 tournament are:

  • $1,000 general entry;
  • $500 for current NSU students, NSU faculty, staff or alumni;
  • Additional Captain’s Party and Awards Reception tickets are $50 each.

Anyone interested in participating in or sponsoring the 2015 Fort Lauderdale Billfish Tournament is urged to contact tournament officials via email (fishingtournament@nova.edu) or by calling 954-262-2105. You can find more information about the 2015 Fort Lauderdale Billfish Tournament online at http://www.nova.edu/fishingtournament/

What makes this tournament stand out from all the others is that it provides direct support for NSU’s Oceanographic Center, which is dedicated to the study and protection of the world’s oceans and the marine life they contain. That’s why the Fort Lauderdale Billfish Tournament provides trophies and small cash prizes – $3,000 for first place, $1,500 for second place and $500 for third place; all of proceeds are earmarked for the Oceanographic Center Fishing Tournament Scholarship Fund. This endowment provides scholarship assistance to attract, retain, encourage, and support high academically achieving and productive graduate students at NSU’s Oceanographic Center who are engaged in outstanding research in the marine sciences.

As this tournament supports an institution of higher learning, of course there’s an educational component built in to the event. Students, along with their professors, will be staffing the weigh-in area to collect samples from the fish caught by the participants. But it’s not like they will be fileting the fish for a good meal; they will be taking various tissue and other samples for further study back at NSU’s Oceanographic Center’s labs.

MEDIA OPPORTUNITY: While all media are encouraged to cover events on both days, NSU is extending a special invitation to all South Florida TV media to set up live remotes at the Captain’s Party being held at NSU’s Oceanographic Center. The Oceanographic Center’s location lends itself to great visuals as it at the northern end of John U. Lloyd State Park, near the entrance of Port Everglades. Media can set up early in order to do live “hits” during the 4-6 p.m. time slots. Tournament officials, participants and students and officials from NSU’s Oceanographic Center will be made available for interviews.




About Nova Southeastern University: Situated on 314 beautiful acres in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, Nova Southeastern University (NSU) is a dynamic research institution dedicated to providing high-quality educational programs at all levels.  NSU is a not-for-profit independent institution with approximately 26,000 students. NSU awards associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, specialist, doctoral and first-professional degrees in a wide range of fields. NSU is classified as a research university with “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, and it is one of only 37 universities nationwide to also be awarded Carnegie’s Community Engagement Classification. For more information, please visit www.nova.edu. Celebrating more than 50 years of academic excellence!

About NSU’s Oceanographic Center: The Oceanographic Center provides high-quality graduate education programs (i.e. masters, doctoral, certificate) in a broad range of marine science disciplines. Center researchers carry out innovative, basic and applied marine and research programs in coral reel biology, ecology, and geology; fish biology, ecology, and conservation; shark and billfish ecology; fisheries science; deep sea organismal biology and ecology; invertebrate and vertebrate genomics, genetics, molecular ecology, and evolution; microbiology; biodiversity; observation and modeling of large scale ocean circulation, coastal dynamics, and ocean atmosphere coupling; benthic habitat mapping; biodiversity; histology; and calcification. For more information, please visit http://www.nova.edu/ocean


Media Contact
Joe Donzelli | Office of Public Affairs
954-262-2159 (office)
954-661-4571 (cell)