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  • BLUECRAB.INFO - Blue Crab Diseases
    cercaria which penetrate the crab Many crabs are infected with the fluke which can barely be seen without a microscope It isn t until the fluke itself becomes infected with the protozoan hyperparasite becoming visible that people exhibit apprehension Jeff Shields VIMS Bitter Crab Disease Bitter Crab Disease Dinoflagellate blood disease Bitter Crab Disease BCD is caused by a blood parasite Hematodinium perezi a type of dinoflagellate Dinoflagellates are single celled microscopic algae The parasite consumes oxygen from the crab s blood and tissues which causes it to become weak and lethargic and to eventually die Hematodinium sp can produce epizootics an outbreak of disease affecting many animals of one kind at the same time Epizootics have been reported in Maryland Virginia Georgia and Florida The disease is most prevalent in warm relatively shallow high salinity waters The parasite is found in the ocean side bays of the Delmarva short for Delaware Maryland and Virginia Peninsula in the spring and fall and spreads to the lower reaches of Chesapeake Bay in the fall In October 1996 the prevalence of BCD along the Virginia portion of the Delmarva Peninsula varied from 20 to 50 percent in legal sized crabs Lower prevalences 1 to 10 percent were noted for crabs caught at the mouth of the Bay In November the prevalence is generally low during the pre breeding and ovigerous sponge crab seasons Once infected the parasite grows rapidly inside the crab up to 100 million parasites ml of blood over the course of 3 to 6 weeks The crab s blood changes to a milky white color and loses it clotting ability Signs of Infection Watermen will find dead or dying crabs in their traps or crabpots Infected crabs are weak lethargic have drooping limbs and mouthparts and often die during

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/diseases.html (2016-05-02)
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  • Blue Crab Fossil
    notice it as a crab Alexander said Then I brushed it off and said Voilà What do I have here Alexander said he thought it might be a crab caught up in fulgurite but three days after the find he took it to a fossil seminar held at the N C Aquarium on Roanoke Island When visiting lecturer JoAnne Powell saw the crab she knew it was an extremely old fossilized specimen Alexander says everyone s eyes opened wide I went over to the aquarium and stopped the show he said Right away he snaps his fingers she said it could be 3 million years old That s when man started walking upright if you believe in that evolution stuff Powell the curator of education at the N C Maritime Museum in Beaufort collects fossils as a hobby In geologic time her initial estimate was relatively close give or take a million and a half years Fossiling is my fun thing to do she said I m a biologist not a paleontologist Powell said the specimen did excite her because it is so rare not many are found in the Carolinas She made a photo copy of the crab and sent it to Florida biologist Roger Portell who is a fossil crab specialist Based on the photo copy he estimated that the crab was from the Pleistocene epoch which ranged from 10 000 to 1 6 million years ago It fell a little short of the earlier estimate of 3 million years but Portell needs to get a look at the claws to diagnose the age properly he said As the senior biological scientist for the Florida Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida in Gainsville Portell has seen a lot of fossils He has studied a large

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/fossil.htm (2016-05-02)
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  • BLUECRAB.INFO - Buying & Preparing Blue Crabs
    seasoning Maryland style crabs are a Chesapeake Bay tradition Maryland Style Fried Soft Crabs Maryland Style Old Bay Seafood Seasonings Make your own seafood seasoning mix using these recipes Maryland Style She Crab Soup New Jersey Style Olive Oil Garlic Crabs Barbecue Crabs BBQ Crabs Learn how Sartin s Seafood has turned barbecue crabs into a local delicacy Frequently Asked Questions Cooking Related Questions How to prevent the claws from

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/cooking_crabs.htm (2016-05-02)
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  • Crabbing - Hard Shell Crabs
    long line is attached to the pot and a marker buoy a cork or Styrofoam float is attached These marker buoys are painted bright colors and have unique markings to help distinguish them from other pots The line must be rugged and it should not float unless you attach a weight to the line Weights are attached about 2 3 feet below the buoy which helps keep the line submerged and less prone to being cut by a boat propeller Another item found on most commercial pots is a zinc anode Since saltwater is very corrosive sacrificial zinc anodes are attached to a pot which effectively doubles its life span commercial pots without zinc anodes usually last only one or two seasons Jimmy Potting During the last two weeks of May watermen will bait their pots with several live jimmies placed in the pot s parlor or use a special peeler pot which lures large mate seeking peelers she crabs that did not reach the terminal or mating molt the year before into the pot While this method works using a regular pot it will only catch a few peelers because once a jimmy doubles up with a female other females will not seek him The use of a peeler pot is preferable which does not exhibit this problem Bare Potting Involves setting an un baited pot down deep in the barren channels Crabs see the pot as a hiding place and will enter the pot It s usually only practiced for several weeks in the spring Peeler Pot A specially designed crabpot used to catch mate seeking female peeler crabs 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 male crab is placed Mate seeking female peeler crabs are attracted to the lone male and will enter the pot and become trapped Peeler pots can be utilized all season long and work remarkably well Trotline Trotline A trotline is the tool of choice in the area near the Chester and Wye Rivers on Maryland s Eastern Shore actually in those areas it s the only choice that s allowed by law A trotline is a very long line it can be over a mile in length which is anchored with heavy weights on each end some watermen use scrap engine blocks as anchors The line is baited at specific intervals and is allowed to sink to the bottom The waterman will start at one end of the line by pulling it up and draping it over a roller attached to the side of the boat As the boat moves down the line the line bait and hopefully crab are slowly raised towards the surface where the watchful waterman will scoop up the crab with a dip net Working a Trotline Photo courtesy of Harvesting the Chesapeake Tools Traditions This method makes for very long hard tedious work Most watermen prefer to use eel

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/crabbing/hardcrabs.html (2016-05-02)
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  • Crabbing - Soft Shell Crabs
    will throw bare pots with nothing in them at all Big males go into the pot to shed For bare potting to work you must have a bald place with no grass or deep down in the channels where the crabs see the pot as a hiding place there being nothing else around Usually only practiced for a week or two in spring Mud Larking Mud Larking For reasons not completely understood a small number of crabs will climb up on to the marshland and blunder through the Spartina grass on a flood tide searching for tiny clearings where in the space of two hours they laboriously excavate conical holes a foot wide and six inches deep finishing just before the tide recedes They then rest happily in these warm little bathtubs of their own construction Some scientists believe this is but another manifestation of the drive for concealment prior to molting Watermen have observed the phenomenon and use a simple technique known as mud larking to take advantage of it Before the advent of crabpots mud larking was practiced by walking out into the marsh basket in hand sneaking up on the resting crabs and snatching them up It is still practiced today strictly as a recreational activity Crab Scrape Crab Scrape Photo courtesy of The Watermen of the Chesapeake Bay Crab Scrape The crab scrape was patented in 1870 by L Copper Dize of Crisfield Maryland and is by far the most efficient tool for harvesting peeler and soft crabs Since its invention the scrape has been used extensively in areas of the lower Chesapeake Bay where there is an abundance of eelgrass growing on the bottom A crab scrape resembles a small hockey goal about 3 to 4 feet wide and about 1 foot high Maryland State law requires that scrapes be no more than 3 feet wide with a 7 foot long net bag attached and weighs about 40 pounds dry The scrape is dragged along the bottom behind a boat through the eelgrass As it is pulled along it scoops up the grass and any peeler or soft crabs hiding within Once pulled aboard the waterman will pull through the grass looking for the small crabs The harvested eelgrass makes a perfect bedding for transporting the delicate crabs Peeler Pound Crab Fyke Peeler Pound or Crab Fyke The exact origin of this gear seems to have been lost but it is generally thought that the peeler pound originated in the late 1800 s which has since evolved into an important tool for harvesting peeler crabs The peeler pound resembles a pound net It has a hedging or leader a bay or heart and a head or trap The hedging is made from 1 inch mesh wire 2 feet tall and extends from the shore a distance depending on the depth of the water at high tide Stakes are placed every 3 to 4 feet and the wire is tacked to the stakes The bay is

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/crabbing/softcrabs.html (2016-05-02)
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  • Building a Crabpot
    tool Two by four board about 3 long Raw Materials Keystone Steel Wire Co sells their crabpot wire under the brand name Red Brand Saltwater Netting Keystone also manufactures a single strand 11 gauge galvanized smooth wire which is ideal for framing the top of the crabpot New to the crabpot scene is Polyvinyl Chloride PVC coated wire This wire has a vinyl coating which won t rust Some waterman claim that the new PVC crabpots catch more crabs Riverdale Mills manufactures a quality PVC coated wire under the brand name Aquamesh Note crabpot wire is not the same as regular chicken wire Crabpot wire is heavier in gauge and is galvanized twice before and after weaving to resist corrosion and hold up longer in saltwater fresh water and marshes Resources Ocean Products Research Inc on Virginia s Middle Peninsula carries everything you ll need to build a crabpot They carry a complete line of galvanized wire PVC coated wire framing wire staples tools line buoys you name it Contact Terry at 800 627 6008 Terminology Wire is measured in meshes rather than standard measurements Meshes are counted along the selvage or finished edge with a mesh being the distance from the top point of a complete hexagon to the bottom point In between meshes are half meshes and cuts in the wire are usually made on the half mesh of the selvage For instance when cutting a piece of wire three meshes long you should count three full hexagons and cut on the half mesh after the third hexagon See Figure 1 Figure 1 A piece of wire three meshes long Remember these important tips Meshes are counted along the selvage finished edge Wire is always cut on the half mesh between full meshes Pieces Parts Here is a

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/crabpot/index.html (2016-05-02)
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  • Regional Crabbing Information
    map or choose a state below Alabama Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Mississippi New Jersey New York North Carolina Pennsylvania Rhode Island South Carolina Texas Virginia Blue

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/regional.htm (2016-05-02)
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  • Blue crab industry
    crab Watermen Commercial Crabbing An inside look at commercial crabbing on the Chesapeake Bay Wholesale O Neal s Sea Harvest An inside look at the operations of a wholesale seafood distributor Crab Houses Una Vida Mejor A Better Life The women from a windblown village in Mexico are human capital They are ordered like product and shipped in for a blue crab season of labor to the coast of North

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/industry.htm (2016-05-02)
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