4th Annual Tagging Challenge

Challenge Dates: March 25 to April 1, 2015


What new can we say as this is the 4th year of our Tagging Challenge.  Not much really, as our focus is still the same, tagging and DNA sampling as many Bonefish, Permit and Tarpon as we can;  hoping for an even larger recapture rate, to provide answers to the questions we have had since the beginning:

  • How large of an area do bonefish use? 
  • What is the size of the geographic area that needs protection to ensure a healthy bonefish population?
  • What size geographical area should be used for management?
  • To what extent do different populations mix (such as Belize City and Ambergris Cay)?
  • If fish habitats are damaged, how far-reaching will be the impact?

All we can do is assure you, we still need plenty of help with the research on our favorite species, as we still have a lot more to learn.

During the challenge, while fishing the species you love, Tarpon, Bonefish & Permit, we keep track of who can tag the most bonefish and permit and dna test tarpon in six days of fishing all while having fun.  However, we know that schools of Ladyfish, Jacks and more are on and around the Flats of Central Belize, and your guide will fish all species during the challenge to keep the days fun or if you prefer, as with the 2014 Challenge angler’s Permit addiction, to target a particular species, your guide will keep you focused on your choice.

The BRL/BTT tagging challenge was created to focus on collecting data for our ongoing study with Bonefish & Tarpon Trust (BTT).  BRL is spaghetti tagging bonefish.  To date, with a little over 500 bonefish spaghetti tagged, we are the only ones in Belize to recapture tagged bonefish.  We have landed and re-released 5 tagged bonefish and amazingly, all the bonefish were about the same size and relatively close to where they were initially captured.  The longest bonefish between captures was a little over a year and a half.   Permit are also being spaghetti tagging and DNA tested, as are tarpon of all sizes.  So far, no DNA sampled Tarpon or Permit have been matched or recaptured in Central Belize;  a true challenge for a future angler.

Prize categories for the Challenge week.  To count, all fish must be measured, spaghetti tagged or DNA sampled and released.
Bonefish – Largest Bonefish landed – one angler
Most Bonefish landed – team (2 anglers)

Permit  – Largest Permit landed – one angler
Most Permit landed – team (2 anglers)

Tarpon – Largest Tarpon landed – one angler
Most Tarpon landed – team (2 anglers)

In addition to participating in a scientific study, your 6 days of fishing at Belize River Lodge will include

  • A Welcome gifts for all participants.
  • BTT membership for any non-members
  • A presentation on bonefish, permit, and tarpon fishing and science.
  • Awards of hand carved wooden trophies for the most and biggest fish tagged of Bonefish, Permit and Tarpon. Carving will be out of beautiful zericote wood and carved by a well-known local Belizean artist.
  • Prizes include two Orvis 8 wt rods and Costa sunglasses.
  • An opportunity to help advance our scientific understanding and knowledge through this event.
  • Funding for more Bonefish and TarponTrust work later, as both BRL and Frontiers are donating to BTT.  Belize River Lodge is donating $500.00 for every angler booked and Frontiers is also making a donation per angler.
  • A fantastic time in a wonderful setting, with little hassle to you – all you need to do is contact BRL at info@belizeriverlodge.com, and/or Denise Schreiber or Barbara Alden at Frontiers and they will do all the work.  Denise’s email address is dschreiber@frontierstravel.com,  Barbara’s is balden@frontierstravel.com or call Frontiers toll free at 1-800-245-1950.

The fishing opportunities at the Belize River Lodge are second to none – the Lodge was one of the hosts for the BTT television show “Buccaneers and Bones” and is one of the top locations in the world for catching IGFA registered Inshore Grand Slams and Super Slams.

Help us, help the Belize’s Saltwater Flats fish. Join our 4th Annual Tagging Challenge, March 25 to April 1, 2015.  2015’s 7 Night/6 Day Lodge Fishing Package is US$3,989.00 per person, based on double occupancy.

Fishing Package Rates Include:   Round trip airport transfers in Belize – meeting & checkout service, accommodations, daily housekeeping, air conditioning in rooms (at BRL Main Lodge only), all meals – including a box lunch, soda & drinking water, guided fishing, skiff & fuel, Belize Taxes of 9% Hotel Tax & 12.5% GST tax. Fishing Packages Rates Do Not Include:   Airfare to & from Belize, fishing equipment & tackle, Belize Fishing License (US$25.00 per angler, per week), alcoholic beverages, tips to guides & staff, Belize Departure Tax (approximately US$39.75 per person, included in your ticket or paid at the airport)

The cost of the Challenge dates is the same as any other week’s package rate.  But you can fish a week, have your reservation aided by Frontiers Travel, the possibility of landing a fish or species within the prize category and both Belize River Lodge and Frontiers makes a donation to Bonefish & Tarpon Trust for future BTT work.

Learn more about Bonefish & Tarpon Trust.

More information on the Why, why we need to study and preserve our Flats.

4th Annual Tagging Challenge Sponsors: