Most Of Sound, Straits Reopening For Crabbing, But Not Area 10

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Most marine areas of Puget Sound will reopen for recreational crab fishing Oct. 1, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced today.

The openings were approved by fishery managers after summer catch assessments by WDFW indicated more crab are available for harvest, said Rich Childers, shellfish manager for the department.

Waters reopening to sport crabbing Oct. 1 at 8 a.m. include marine areas 4 (Neah Bay, east of the Tatoosh-Bonilla line), 5 (Sekiu), 6 (eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca), 7 (San Juan Islands), 8-1 (Deception Pass, Hope Island, and Skagit Bay), 8-2 (Port Susan and Port Gardner), 9 (Admiralty Inlet), 11 (Tacoma-Vashon Island), 12 (Hood Canal), and 13 (South Puget Sound).

In each area, crabbing will be allowed seven days a week through Dec. 31.

KIRAN WALGAMOTT MEASURES A DUNGENESS CRAB HAULED OUT OF SECRET HARBOR THIS PAST SUMMER. (ANDY WALGAMOTT)

KIRAN WALGAMOTT MEASURES A DUNGENESS CRAB HAULED OUT OF SECRET HARBOR THIS PAST SUMMER. (ANDY WALGAMOTT)

Sport crabbing will not reopen at this time in Marine Area 10 (Seattle/Bremerton).

The daily catch limit in Puget Sound is five Dungeness crab, males only, in hard-shell condition with a minimum carapace width of 6¼ 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 on WDFW’s website athttp://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/crab/.

All Dungeness crab caught in the late-season fishery must be recorded on winter catch cards, which are valid through Dec. 31. Winter cards – free to those with crab endorsements – are available at license vendors across the state.

Winter catch reports are due to WDFW by Feb. 1, 2016. For more information on catch record cards, visit WDFW’s website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/shellfish/crab/crc.html.

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