Once again we were able to spend a few days on our magnificent West Coast with time to indulge in one of our favourite activities, fishing for Dungeness crab. The weather was very accommodating with clear blue skies, a gentle sea breeze and sunny days; just perfect for being on the ocean waters.
Kayak - Our Crab Fishing Boat
This trip our faithful inflatable boat was out of service and we were happy to be able to borrow a kayak with ample room to drop off and pick up the crab net. Although we only spent a few trips out with the crab net we were pleased to be able to catch our limits.
Dungeness Crab Size & Colour
It was interesting to note that all the crabs in the net were male with no females. The crabs were also a good size and several well above limit. The crabs were a bright colour, clear and clean and freshly cooked they were sweet and tasty. Last year's very hot and dry spring and summer may have been a reason that the crabs caught were often covered in barnacles and a green algae and did not seem to be as tasty as this year's catch.
- Legal Dungeness crab size for B.C, Canada is 165 mm (or 6 ½ inches) which is larger than the U.S limits
- Handling and care: Always treat all your catch humanely and process as soon as possible
- Heavy fines apply if you are caught crab fishing illegally in B.C. e.g. under-size, catch is over quotas, fishing with too many nets, and as outlined in Unlawful Actions from Fisheries Department
- Commercial crab fishing in B.C. is a multi-million dollar industry
- Prices of crab, along with most food, has risen significantly this year
- Both Dungeness Crab and Spot Prawns are classified as sustainable seafood
"The fishery for Dungeness crab in British Columbia is given an overall seafood
recommendation of ‘best choice’. This species has a low inherent vulnerability to fishing
pressure due to a low age of first maturity, relatively fast growth, high fecundity and low
This year, once again, we consider ourselves most fortunate to be able to enjoy the bounty of our local oceans. Another fun and rewarding crab fishing experience, being on the water with the bonus of catching tasty Dungeness crab - a true local delicacy. As always take care and be safe. Happy Summer holidays!
Links & References:
- How to Fish for Crab - our 1st time experience 3 years ago
- How to Handle & Prepare your Dungeness Crab catch
- Sport Fishing Guidelines for Crab from Department of Fisheries
- Report on the impact of climate change in the Pacific Northwest with warming oceans and higher acidity Sea Change - The Pacific's Perilous Turn and from the report :
"Changes come decades faster than expected
Less than a decade ago, scientists expected acidification wouldn’t harm marine life until late in the 21st century.
In the past five years, researchers instead have figured out it’s happening now."