Tag Archives: Dungeness crab season

Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission adopts new rules for Dungeness crab

Harmful algal blooms complicated commercial Dungeness crab seasons on the Oregon Coast for the past three seasons, threatening the viability of the state’s most valuable fishery.,,The new rules outline evisceration protocols that go into place when levels of the naturally occurring marine toxin domoic acid spike. The toxin can accumulate at high levels in a crab’s guts, but remove the guts and the meat is still safe to eat. The rules also establish 12 distinct crabbing zones on the Oregon Coast, narrowing the areas that can be closed or opened at any given time. >click to read<22:42

Slow crawl for crab: Seasonal delays stifle coastal economy

Price strikes, delays and poor weather have plagued the 2017-18 Dungeness crab season from the start. Roughly four weeks into the season, landings for the non-tribal coastal crab fishery in Washington were 5,574,792 pounds, only about 60 percent of the total catch during the first weeks of 2016-17 season. “It’s clear this season we are behind,” Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, said upon seeing the first official numbers of the season on Friday, Feb 16. >click to read<12:35

Price talks delay Dungeness crab season

Crab boats loaded with pots sat at the docks all weekend while fishermen and processors remained in a gridlock over prices. The commercial Dungeness crab season was set to open Monday in most of Oregon and Washington state, but price negotiations and ocean conditions are keeping boats at home.,,, At one point major processors had offered crabbers $2.30 a pound — not nearly enough to convince them to go out, local crabbers said. >click here to read< 14:12

Northern California Commercial Dungeness Crab Season Opener Pushed Back to Dec. 31

The director of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) has announced an additional 15-day delay for the upcoming commercial Dungeness crab season, based on the results of another round of pre-season quality testing conducted on Dec. 5. The tests continued to show that Dungeness crab are not yet ready for harvesting. The delay affects Fish and Game Districts 6, 7, 8 and 9 (Mendocino, Humboldt and Del Norte counties). The season in these districts is now scheduled to open on 12:01 a.m. Dec. 31, 2017, to be preceded by a 64-hour gear setting period that would begin no earlier than 8:01 a.m. on Dec. 28, 2017. click here to read the press release 19:32

Crab start delayed again

The commercial Dungeness crab season has been delayed again along the entire Pacific coast north of Point Arena, California until at least Dec. 31 after tests showed some crab are still too low in meat yield. Crab on the south Washington coast met the meat standard in Dec. 4 testing, but all areas north of Cascade Head have to be at or above 23 percent before the season can open. South of Cascade Head, the required meat threshold is 25 percent. (Cascade Head is located just north of Lincoln City on the north Oregon coast.) click here to read the story 14:04

Commercial Dungeness Crab Season in Northern California Delayed Due to Crab Quality Testing

Due to poor crab meat quality test results conducted at the beginning of November, the Director of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) has issued a memo delaying the opening of the commercial Dungeness crab season in Fish and Game Districts 6, 7, 8 and 9 (Mendocino, Humboldt and Del Norte counties) for a minimum of 15 days until Dec. 16, under authority of Fish and Game Code section 8276.2. Crab quality tests ensure that crab are filled out enough prior to harvesting and follow the testing guidelines established by the Tri-State Dungeness Crab Committee that is overseen by the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission. click here to read the press release 21:15

Dungeness crab season under way on the North Coast

The commercial crabbing season will start on time off the Sonoma Coast this fall for the first time in three years, putting fresh Dungeness crab in local markets by week’s end and restoring long-held autumn and holiday traditions. Commercial crabbers around Bodega Harbor hustled Monday to load boats with gear and bait and leave port in time to start soaking crab pots off the coast by early Tuesday morning. Their clocks were set for 6:01 a.m., the first moment by law at which they are permitted to put gear in the water. They can start pulling full pots and landing crab at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, the official start of the season. click here to read the story 09:04

Commercial Dungeness crab season scheduled to start on Nov. 15

On Thursday, the California Department of Public Health said that the local commercial Dungeness crab season is expected to begin as scheduled on Wednesday for the San Francisco fishing fleet and the region south of the Mendocino County line. As in recent years, there was some concern about whether that would happen when preseason tests of Dungeness crabs caught in far Northern California — especially near Fort Bragg and Crescent City (Del Norte County) — showed dangerous levels of domoic acid, the naturally occurring toxin that delayed the 2015-16 and 2016-17 commercial crab seasons. click here to read the story 21:34

Dungeness crab season could be delayed again by the toxin domoic acid

Dungeness crab season is approaching in the Bay Area, along with all the rituals that come with it — the crab feeds and holiday dinners piled with crab legs, sourdough bread and crocks of melted butter. Unfortunately, there’s another, more recent local tradition that is also back: uncertainty about whether algal blooms will delay the season. Domoic acid is the naturally occurring toxin caused by algal blooms that delayed the past two Dungeness crab seasons. According to test results from the California Department of Public Health, elevated levels of the toxin have shown up in samples of Dungeness crab collected in recent weeks at several North Coast ports. However, the agency said it’s too soon to say whether domoic acid will delay the commercial Dungeness fishery, due to open Nov. 15. click here to read the story 11:05

Crab fishermen strike for higher price per-pound from Bodega Bay north through Oregon and Washington

Crabbers from Bodega Bay north through Oregon and Washington to the Canadian border went on strike Wednesday afternoon after wholesale Dungeness crab buyers sought to lower the per-pound price fishermen earn for the much sought-after crustacean. Fishermen have agreed to either cease crabbing in areas off the Sonoma Coast where the Dungeness crab season has already opened, or delay the start of their season in hopes of retaining the $3-per-pound price they have earned fishing in Northern California’s rich waters so far this year, according to Lorne Edwards, president of the Bodega Bay Fisherman’s Marketing Association, an industry trade group. Read the rest of the story here 07:48

State of Oregon opens portion of coast for commercial Dungeness crabbing

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Oregon Department of Agriculture have announced that the opening of the commercial crab season from Cape Blanco to the Oregon/California border is set for Dec. 18.“We have consistently taken a very precautionary approach when opening our crab fisheries,” said ODFW Marine Resources Program Manager Caren Braby. “Recent test results have consistently shown low biotoxin results on the southern end of the state and decreasing levels in ports north of this area indicating they are of excellent quality, safe for consumption and ready for harvest.” In addition, the Oregon Dungeness Crab Commission announced Tuesday that Oregon Dungeness crab fishermen and seafood processor representatives participating in state-supervised crab price negotiations have agreed on an opening price of $3 per pound for the 2017 Dungeness crab season partial opening this week. Read the rest of the story here 08:59

Large swells delays North Coast crab hauls in season opener

dungenesscrabRough waters put a damper on the opening of the North Coast’s commercial Dungeness crab season Thursday, but Friday is expected to provide a window for some crab hauls to hit local ports. Wild Planet Foods Eureka processing plant manager Jeff Huffman said no crabs were unloaded at his facility as of Thursday afternoon. “The weather was so bad we didn’t have any of our boats fishing,” Huffman said Thursday. “Tomorrow we should have most everybody out. Everyone should get some gear in the water.” Stepping out of a meeting on Thursday afternoon, Humboldt Fishermen’s Marketing Association Vice President Ken Bates said nobody had reported in any hauls. “The ocean is really crummy again,” Bates said, referencing Monday’s and Tuesday’s high swells. “The swells are pretty big. It’s not 24 feet like it was, but it’s still pretty big.” Read the rest here 10:52

Crab season in full gear: Commercial season off to good start at Pillar Point Harbor

dungeness-crabOne week after the long-anticipated commercial Dungeness crab season roared to life, hundreds of fishermen and crustacean-craving customers are eagerly indulging in the multi-million dollar industry. State wildlife officials gave the thumbs up for commercial fishermen to begin reeling in crab pots Nov. 15, just in time to satiate a Thanksgiving market. A rainy opening weekend was initially feared to keep customers who buy directly off the boat at bay. Fortunately, gray skies were not a deterrent to those who’ve waited more than a year for fresh crab, said commercial fisherman Barry Day, who reflected on the first weekend of the season. “The leadup to it, I was sitting in the coffee shop thinking, ‘aw, they’re still all scared and there might be a couple of people.’ But I came up here and I fell off my god damn chair. It was raining and we still got bombed. People, people, people! And I’m so grateful for that. I thought wow, the people are back. It’s fantastic,” Day said. “Even in the rain, we were all dripping and wow, totally awesome.” Read the story here 08:10

The History Of Dungeness Crab Season In San Francisco

Dungeness crab season is back and in full effect! After a lengthy ban on commercial fishing of the delectable little crustaceans in California, dungeness crab season got back underway this week and restored a cherished San Francisco tradition of chowing down locally caught crab for Thanksgiving and Christmas. (Okay, so there’s a little toxic acid in their guts. The government says the crabs are safe to eat now To celebrate the return of this outrageously delicious seafood that it is outrageously hard to dig out of its shell, the Broke-Ass Fish, Game and Wildlife Commission looks back with fondness on the 170-year history of dungeness crab season in San Francisco. 1848 – CRAB FISHING TAKES OFFRead the rest here 14:09

Commercial crab season opens with regs to protect whales

b9324787345z-1_20161115200329_000_gvhge36fq-2-0As commercial fishermen set their traps in preparation for the Dungeness crab season, both fishermen and environmentalists hope that new regulations will protect whales from being snared. To protect the whales, the CDCWE working group met last month and created a “Best Practices” guide for crab fishermen. The guide suggests specific distances between the main and leader buoys and recommends that fishermen keep their gear well maintained so it won’t break apart and float away. This group is composed of commercial and recreational crab fishermen, environmentalists, members from the whale disentanglement network, and state and federal agency employees. “The crab fishermen have been very active in participating in the dialogue on ways to reduce whale entanglements,” said Moss Landing Harbor Master Linda McIntyre. “They are as anxious and committed to deterring these occurrences as anyone.” Read the story here 10:18

Coast Guard ramps up safety checks for fishermen in preparation for Dungeness Crab Season

Coast Guard personnel began conducting dockside exams and safety spot-checks Tuesday in San Francisco to identify discrepancies aboard fishing vessels prior to the Dungeness Crab season. The checks are scheduled to continue through Thursday at commercial fishing ports from Monterey to Crescent City and are part of the Coast Guard’s Operation Safe Crab, which is an outreach initiative to reduce the loss of lives and fishing vessels in the West Coast crab fleet. Since Operation Safe Crab’s inception, Coast Guard personnel have walked the docks and spot-checked crab vessels for the required primary lifesaving equipment, pot-loading practices affecting stability and vessel watertight integrity. These safety checks are conducted in an attempt to reduce the number of crab-fishing casualties. Read the rest here 08:49

State of California officials optimistic for crab season: Coast Guard to begin safety inspections

dungenesscrabThe upcoming Dungeness crab season appears to be headed in a good direction and authorities are reminding fishermen to begin checking their safety equipment in preparation for the season, according to the state’s Department of Fish and Wildlife and the U.S. Coast Guard. Coast Guard officials are set to being inspecting crab-fishing vessels next month on Nov. 8, 9 and 10 at commercial fishing ports from Monterey to Crescent City. The safety checks are part of the Coast Guard’s Operation Safe Crab, an outreach initiative intended to reduce fatalities and accidents during the season. During the safety checks, Coast Guard personnel check vessels for the required lifesaving equipment, pot-loading practices affecting stability and vessel watertight integrity, according to the Coast Guard. Commercial crab fishing is an inherently dangerous job and West Coast crabbing vessels reportedly have a high fatality rate, Coast Guard officials said. Read the story here 08:32

Bodega Bay – Optimism for the coming Dungeness crab season is building

nya-genovese-painting-crab-buoys-bodega-bayOptimism for the coming Dungeness crab season is building amid growing evidence that last year’s historic problems with toxic algae along the California coast may not be an issue again this year. The Nov. 15 commercial season opener is still nearly six weeks out, so there are no guarantees at this point. But testing of sample crabs suggests the fishery will likely open on time, making the shellfish available for the lucrative holiday markets, according to state officials. “We believe that the worst may be behind us,” state Sen. Mike McGuire, chairman of the Joint Legislative Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture, said during a Tuesday hearing at the UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory. Fishermen and consumers, who have turned Dungeness crab into a must-have winter treat, can thank cooling ocean temperatures for the brightening forecast, officials said. Read the story here, nine images.  14:34

Next Dungeness crab season remains murky while fishermen are optimistic

dungeoness crab seasonAfter an algae-produced neurotoxin significantly curtailed the last Dungeness crab season, commercial anglers are glad to hear that the upcoming season won’t be spoiled — at least not to the same extent. “We’re not going to see closures of the entire state,” said Raphael Kudela, an ocean sciences professor at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Ben Platt, a crab fishermen who docks his boat at Pillar Point Harbor, said in email to the Review that he and others were feeling optimistic that the domoic acid would not interfere with the start of this year’s season. “We are all hopeful that our season will start as normal on Nov. 15 in Central California based on the overall cooler water temperatures off our coast,” he wrote. “We were able to have a limited season last spring and get people used to buying and eating crab again. “Many of our fishing families were able to get back to work and start paying their bills again,” he said. Read the story here 19:35

‘Horrible’ season: North Coast crabbers haul in third of average catch

AR-160739983.jpg&maxh=400&maxw=667Asked to describe this year’s nine-week commercial Dungeness crab season that should have lasted seven months, Eureka-based crab fisherman Jubal Hall was quite frank. “It was garbage,” he said. “It was horrible.” Hall, 40, is now on his way to Alaska to make up for his losses by fishing on the notoriously dangerous waters of the Bering Sea. While it’s not his preference, Hall said he needs to be able to make up for the financial losses that this year’s dismally short crab season and a second job on the side could not.“I’m broke,” he said. “I’m going up to Alaska because that’s what I’ve got to do to survive.” The Dungeness crab season on California’s North Coast was the hardest hit by toxic algae blooms that have persisted now for over a year straight. Read the story here 09:46

Following a 6 month delay, Dungeness crab catch plummets on North Coast

AR-160519864.jpg&maxh=400&maxw=667While the first few days of Humboldt County’s six-month-late Dungeness crab season had some good hauls, the catch has dropped to the point that some crabbers are already packing away their gear, according to local industry sources. “I’ve never seen it go down this fast,” Wild Planet Foods Eureka plant manager Jeff Huffman said Tuesday, “though we’ve never had a season start this late. Usually we’re locking the doors at this point.” But some crabbers are faring better than others since the North Coast commercial Dungeness crab season opened on May 12. Jubal Hall of the “My Lady” crabbing vessel said he will continue crabbing as long as they can, and described the catch so far as “decent, but not great.” Read the story here 08:21

Fisherman’s Wharf feast celebrates belated crab season, but exposes wounds

The dripping, juicy crab served to fishing industry dignitaries, politicians and other celebrators Friday in San Francisco may have served as a salve for those suffering from the late opening of the commercial Dungeness season, but it didn’t ease the belly pains caused by money troubles. “This has been a disaster,” said Rep. Jared Huffman, D-San Rafael, who joined San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and state senators Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, and Mike McGuire, D-Healdsburg, in a crab feast at Fisherman’s Wharf honoring the crab season’s opening this week. Huffman seemed to catch himself and adjust his tone as he glimpsed the melted butter, fresh crab meat, sourdough bread and wine piled high on tables set up on the pier outside Seamen’s Memorial Chapel. Read the rest, Click here 22:33

Video – California Commercial Dungeness Crab Season Could Start Next Week

dungenesscrabState officials opened the central coast of California to recreational Dungeness crab season on Thursday and commercial season could open as soon as late next week, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife said. Some state fishermen have said they want to wait until the whole state tests clean before commercial season opens. The California Dungeness Crab Task Force may make a decision on whether to open commercial crab fishing on Tuesday during a conference call to discuss the matter. Video Read the rest here 16:10

USCG Assists Fish and Wildlife Departments Patrol Crab Opening

The Coast Guard assisted representatives of the Washington and Oregon Departments of Fish and Wildlife patrol the waters of the Pacific Northwest during the pre-soak period of the commercial Dungeness Crab season, which opens Jan. 4, 2015. The Dungeness Crab Season begins Monday from the California/Oregon border north to Destruction Island, Washington including Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor. The Northern Washington to U.S./Canada border Dungeness Crab season will begin at a date to be announced later, but no sooner than January 15. Read the article here 09:35

Getting Close! California’s Dungeness crab season still not ready to begin

dungenesscrab“I don’t know when we will reopen,” California Department of Fish and Wildlife Director Charlton Bonham told a legislative committee in Santa Rosa. “You deserve honesty.” Tests by the California Department of Public Health show levels of domoic acid, a biotoxin that has tainted this year’s crabs, have declined to safe levels from San Francisco to Santa Barbara. But it will take another round of clean tests for Fish and Wildlife to consider opening the commercial crab season in those areas, and levels of domoic acid remain high in northern counties from Sonoma to the Oregon border. Read the article here 07:43

Dungeness crab: Toxic algae could delay Northern California season

Bay Area fishermen are worried that the Dungeness crab season could be delayed by high levels of a naturally occurring toxin that’s harmful to humans. Don Marshall, a fishermen out of Pillar Point Harbor in San Mateo County, said the Northern California fleet is worried that the commercial season, slated to open Nov. 15 in time for Thanksgiving, could be delayed for weeks and even months. The Nov. 7 opening of the recreational season could also be pushed back. “If we lose the Thanksgiving market and the holiday market, that’s a crusher for us,” Read the rest here 21:28

Crab season: ‘It’s strange for them to be so full at the first of the season’

CHARLESTON, Ore. — With Dungeness crab season now in full swing, commercial fishermen are flooding Oregon’s coastal ports with thousand of pounds of crab. Scott Adams, plant manager for Hallmark Fisheries, said they have a use for every crab in the multiple catches a boat may make each day. If a crab is not up to par the meat is picked out in a labor-intensive process called backing. The crab is cooked then put on ice to be shipped out. Adams said the labor and the price of crab make it an extremely expensive (yet popular) product of the sea. [email protected]  10:07

Blowin’ 20 -30, Rough Sea’s in the Bay Area leaves Dungeness Fleet tied to the dock

Seafood markets and crab experts said boats likely won’t be bringing in their bounties until Sunday at the earliest as high winds are expected to continue through Saturday night. The National Weather Service reported sustained offshore winds of 20 to 25 mph Friday in the Bay Area with gusts as high as 30 mph. Winds are expected to diminish to 10 to 20 mph Sunday. [email protected]   08:21

Oregon crabbers struggle despite large harvest

CHARLESTON — Three months in, feedback on the Oregon commercial Dungeness crab season is mixed. “Maybe it was a big-boat season,”’ Reeves said. “The big boats got ’em while little operations like my own starve to death.” Reeves said harvest numbers can be deceptive representations of actual commercial success. For one thing, fishermen just aren’t getting the prices they’re used to. continued