Got Crabs?


New Member
Hey all,
Any of you participate in the time-honored tradition of harvesting Dungennes crabs from Puget Sound? I wouldn't mind bringing home a couple for the missus to cook up this year, however, I'm not familiar with the equipment, seasons, bait, licensing et cetera. Thanks for any tips.



New Member
Crabbing is pretty straightforward. What you will need is a ring or a trap. Most sporting goods stores sell these items or you might be able to rent them. As far as seasons go, check the regulations for the area you plan to crab and call the red tide hotline before you go. You'll need a seaweed/shellfish license as well as a catch record card for Dungeness. For bait, talk to your local grocer's seafood department. They will probably be glad to give you a bag of fish scraps (heads, tails, etc.). This makes excellent bait. Attach the bait to the ring or trap (you might want to purchase a bait box) so that it cannot be removed. Drop the contraption off a dock or attach it to a buoy if you are using a boat. Pull it up every half hour or so and you should have a few keepers. Good luck.


A really good bait to use is a can of cat food. It seems to drive the crab wild. Cat food of any brand always seemed to do better then fish scraps. To make the crab tast better then you get from the store or a restrant, clean it before cooking. To do this grab the legs and pinchers and using a sharp edge knock the shell off by hitting the front of the shell right bellow the eyes. This will remove the shell and most of the guts killing the crab quickly. Then pick out the eight lungs rinse and put into a pot of boiling water. This way the crab is killed quickly and the taste is much cleaner. I learned this trick from commercial guys who do this for the ones they eat but just boil alive for the ones going to market. Do check the regs for size limitations and dates the seasons are open. Also before buying a float check the color regulations for floats, you are no longer allowed to use old bleach bottles. Also make sure if leaving a pot out on open water to put your name and address on the float and scratched into the pot. Many are being ripped off over the last couple of years. A freind of mine had 3 ripped off last year. One last note if you catch one the looks like a small king crab please release it its a puget sound king crab and they are very rare now days.

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