Four areas of Puget Sound will reopen to recreational crab fishing Nov. 15, the state Department of Fish and Wildlife has announced. Following an assessment of this summer’s catch, these area have more crab available for harvest.
At 8 a.m. Nov. 15, marine areas 6 (eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca), 9 (Admiralty Inlet), 10 (Seattle/Bremerton) and 12 (Hood Canal) will reopen for sport crabbing seven days a week through Jan. 2.
Crab fishing also will remain open seven days a week through Jan. 2 in marine areas 4 (Neah Bay), 5 (Sekiu), and 13 (south Puget Sound), where the fishery has continued uninterrupted since June 18.
Because the summer catch reached or exceeded the annual quotas, sport crabbing will not reopen this year in marine areas 7 (San Juan Islands), 8-1 (Deception Pass, Hope Island and Skagit Bay), 8-2 (Port Susan and Port Gardner) and 11 (Tacoma/Vashon Island).
All crab caught in the Puget Sound after Sept. 1 should be recorded on winter catch cards, which are valid until Jan. 2. Those catch reports are due to the department by Feb. 1. For more information on catch record cards, visit the agency’s website.
“It’s important that people submit their reports, even if they didn’t catch any crab,” Rich Childers, shellfish policy coordinator, said in a prepared statement. “A report showing no crab caught is just as important in calculating the catch as one that shows lots of crab caught.”
The daily catch limit in Puget Sound is five Dungeness crab, males only, in hard-shell condition with a minimum carapace width of 6π inches. In addition, fishers may catch six red rock crab of either sex per day, provided those crab measure at least 5 inches across. Additional information is available by clicking here.