Published: Aug 23, 2010 4:03 PM EDT
Updated: Aug 23, 2010 1:03 PM EDT

KEY LARGO, Fla. (AP) - Forget the snapper and amberjack. A Florida Keys foundation is inviting divers to participate in a series of cash prize derbies to remove lionfish.

The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and Reef

Environmental Education Foundation will host a series of derbies to remove the invasive species starting in September.

A sanctuary spokeswoman said divers could win more than $10,000 in cash and prizes.

The lionfish population has been growing rapidly in waters off the Keys, concerning environmentalist who say they could devastate coral reefs and disrupt the marine ecosystem balance.