Soft crab: April 1–Dec. Maryland moved Monday to reduce the commercial harvest of female blue crabs in the aftermath of a survey finding that the Chesapeake Bay's crab population hit a five-year low last winter. Male and female crabs can be distinguished by examining their apron, which is folded and fitted snugly into a groove on the underside of the crab. The biggest, heaviest crabs are typically harvested during the fall months (September to mid-November). In December, as the weather cools down, crabs from the Chesapeake Bay head towards the warmer waters. Don't forget to bring a ruler! To set or fish a trotline, collapsible trap or crab net ring within 100 feet of another individual’s set gear. To fish crab gear which belongs to another person. A specially designed crabpot used to catch mate-seeking female peeler crabs. It is Illegal for a Recreational Crabber: To sell crabs. Lest you feel morally superior for only eating males, keep in mind that the crab in crab cakes, crab dips and other products containing lump crab meat usually comes from female crabs. Autumn can be busy time for blue crabs and those who would catch them. The minimum size for soft crab is 3 1/2 inches during the entire season. And watermen start resetting their lines of crab pots, trying to guess when and where the crabs will be moving during their down Bay migration. To set or fish a trotline, collapsible trap or crab net ring within 100 feet of another individual’s set gear. A peeler pot is similar to a standard crabpot except that instead of a bait box, it incorporates a special holding cell where a live Jimmy is placed. To possess an egg-bearing (sponge) crab or any female hard or peeler crab. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources decided earlier this year to ease its catch caps on female crabs this summer. As the days shorten and the weather cools, female blue crabs start scuttling southwards and male crab head for deeper waters. The Department of Natural Resources announced that it was lowering the daily allowable catch of female crabs… Since 2008, they've restricted the catch of female crabs - each of which can produce more than 8 million eggs in her lifetime - in hopes of protecting more of them so they can produce baby crabs. Catonsville, MD. 15—3½ inches. To possess an egg-bearing (sponge) crab or any female hard or peeler crab. INDIVIDUAL CRABBING. Trotline (1200 feet of baited line maximum allowed) floats must be the same size, color and shape To fish crab … The peak season for Maryland Blue Crabs is from April to the end of November. Soft crab: April 1 to December 15—3½ inches; It is illegal for a recreational crabber: To sell crabs. Location: 829 Frederick Rd. A license is required of an individual who uses the following gear or takes the following quantity of crabs: . The male's apron is long and slender, resembling an inverted "T". The DNR posted a public notice May 30 that daily bushel limits for harvesting female crabs would be relaxed for almost all types of commercial crabbing beginning July 1. Mate-seeking female peeler crabs are attracted to the lone male and will enter the pot and become trapped. If you have any questions about our blog, “Maryland to Reduce Catch Limits on Female Crabs by 20-40%,” or now have an overwhelming urge to eat some delicious Maryland Blue Crabs, please contact Catonsville Gourmet by calling 410-788-0005 or visit CatonsvilleGourmet.com today! Yes, we know that sounds weird, but Maryland has strict rules regarding the size of the crabs you're allowed to catch, as well as the crab's sex (example: it is illegal to possess female crabs in the Chesapeake, but mature female crabs in the Atlantic tributaries are fine). 21228. 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