Accomplishments of the Series
- Series emphasis on tag and release has helped change South Carolina's billfishing statistics from 90 percent mortality to 99 percent released.
- Tag recoveries from Series-tagged billfish are benefitting research efforts. A South Carolina tagged marlin, recaptured off Brazil after traveling 4,320 nautical miles, provided the first known evidence of a billfish's trans-equatorial crossing.
- Series conservation funds contributed to the construction of three new South Carolina artificial reefs in the Charleston Deep Reef MPA. Additionally, through Harry Hampton and other generous funding sources, the Series supported publications of studies examining migratory movements and how artificial reef design affects pelagic fish species abundance and composition, as well as financed projects through the SCDNR Marine Game Fish Tagging Program in support of the tuna, wahoo and dolphin tagging initiative.
- Series conservation funds financed travel costs for MRD's Office of Fisheries Management staff to attend NMFS Highly Migratory Species Management meetings and funded an economic impact study of the 1997 Governor's Cup.
- The Cup was instrumental in achieving passage of a law banning the sale of billfish in S.C.
- The Series received the South Carolina Wildlife Federation's prestigious Outdoor Ethics Conservationist award for 1993.
- South Carolina's success inspired North Carolina and Georgia to form Governor's Cup Series of their own, along with an annual interstate competition, the Carolinas Shootout.
- The Governor's Cup provided initial funding for the S.C. Dolphin Tagging Research Project, set up to study the migration range of this highly sought after pelagic gamefish by recruiting recreational anglers to tag a portion of their catch for science
- The Cup provided funding for tournament surveys to be conducted at major billfish tournaments along the S.C. coast.