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  • Dressing soft crabs
    crab across the face at an upward angle so that the eye sockets and scaly section of the lower mouth are removed Step 2 Lift each side of the shell and remove gills Step 3 Turn crab over Cut off

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/cleaning_softs.htm (2016-05-02)
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  • Blue Crab Nutrition Facts
    good nutrition Crab meat is an excellent source of phosphorus zinc copper calcium and iron and is very low in fat especially saturated fat For a complete nutritional analysis click here Crab meat is also somewhat high in cholesterol which can also raise your blood cholesterol level Most major health organizations such as the American Heart Association recommend a daily limit of 300mg It is important to note that saturated

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/nutrition.htm (2016-05-02)
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  • Handling Live Blue Crabs
    gloves Bare Handed With a lot of care and practice you can handle live blue crabs with your bare hands The trick is to know where to hold them Pick up the crab from behind grabbing it at the base of its swimming fin where it connects to the main body Hold it so that your thumb is on top of the joint and your index finger is curled underneath When held properly the crab will not be able to get you with its sharp claws try as he may The first several times that you do this your gut instinct is to panic and let go because it seems as if he ll pinch you But you soon get the hang of it and you won t think twice about it Some useful tips include gently stepping on the crab with your shoe from the front in order to subdue him so that he won t be able to maneuver and pinch you while you re approaching him You can also use a piece of wood or other object to hold the crab down while you grab his swimming fin Above all you must have respect for the crab The instant you let your guard down he ll strike And once he grabs a hold of you he won t let go without a fight Tongs Another popular method of handling crabs is to use a sturdy pair of tongs especially when transferring crabs to the cooking pot Ouch If you find yourself in the awkward predicament of having a crab latched on to your flesh be assured that he won t let go without some persuasion A quick flick of the wrist might do the trick assuming that he s locked onto a finger But the most efficient

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/crabbing/handling.html (2016-05-02)
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  • Crabpot Cull Ring
    where the harvest consists mainly of female crabs and in the tributaries where the harvest is primarily male crabs would be burdensome Such a regulation would necessitate crab potters maintain two rigs of pots as potters are highly mobile to follow the runs of crabs through the Bay and respond to market conditions As part of a comprehensive package designed to conserve the crab resource yet protect the crabbing industry regulation 450 01 0093 which required all crab pots to have a cull ring of 2 5 16 inches or greater was adopted by the Commission in 1994 Regulation 450 01 0093 was modified in December 1995 to require two cull rings one 2 5 16 inches or greater and one 2 3 16 inches or greater The two cull rings of different sizes were chosen as a compromise between industry concerns and resource conservation Culling efficiency is improved by increasing the number of cull rings in each pot The conservation would be greatest in the tributaries which harbor most immature female and small male crabs where both rings must be open Industry concerns were addressed regarding the harvest of small mature female crabs by allowing the 2 5 16 inch ring to be closed when the pot is fished in the Bay as delineated in code by crab dredge lines Equally important to industry the same piece of gear could be used in the tributaries both cull rings open and in the Bay with the 2 5 16 inch ring closed Virginia Law regarding Cull Rings PREAMBLE This regulation establishes a requirement for the use of cull rings in crab pots and is promulgated pursuant to the authority contained in 28 2 201 of the Code of Virginia This regulation amends previous Regulation 4 VAC 20 700 10 et

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/cull_ring.htm (2016-05-02)
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  • Crab Pot Marker Buoys
    watermen are forced to drop an ever increasing number of crab pots in order to catch them So many in fact that some creeks and rivers become clogged with pots marker buoys making navigation tricky Be advised that it is

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/crabpots.htm (2016-05-02)
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  • Sacrificial Zinc Anode
    Either or both metals in the couple may or may not corrode by itself themselves in seawater When contact with a dissimilar metal is made however the self corrosion rates will change corrosion of the anode will accelerate corrosion of the cathode will decelerate or even stop Smart watermen know this fact and employ the use of sacrificial zinc anodes on their zinc galvanized metal crabpots With the sacrificial anode

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/zinc_anode.htm (2016-05-02)
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  • Using a trotline to catch blue crabs
    simple slipknots see diagram at right Some watermen space their baits by the width of their outstretched arms Just remember that the closer the spacing the more bait required Howard Garey an avid trotliner says that it s much easier to work with wet line His technique is to put the bait pieces on a cutting board and to place a bushel basket on each side knotting up the baits and faking the baited line into the basket That s the tricky part because the last thing you want is to have that baby tangle up when you re laying out your line Tip By using 5 32 inch line you can easily remove spoiled baits by quickly jerking the slipknot The knot will quickly compress and cut through the bait causing it to pop off Once the bait is gone and the knot untied simply tie a new slipknot insert bait and pull snug If you use line that is thicker than 5 32 inch the line won t be as sharp and won t be able to cut through the old baits very easily How to Tie a Slipknot Photo courtesy of Harvesting the Chesapeake Tools Traditions Snoods or Trots Long ago watermen attached their baits to the main line using 6 dropper lines called snoods or trots One end of the snood is tied to the main line and the other end is tied to the bait Many watermen still prefer to use snoods although they use special stainless steel clips to fasten the snoods to the main line The photos below show how easy it is to attach a snood to the main line using a 3 inch mini clip Simply squeeze the clip and hook it over the line When the clip is released it is securely attached to the main line The ingenious design of the clip makes it virtually impossible for it to fall off The six inch snood line with bait attached not shown is tied to the bottom eyelet of the clip Some obvious advantages of using this method are The ability to store the trotline bare and dry with no baits attached As the trotline is deployed snoods are clipped on at whatever interval is deemed necessary for the conditions As you run the trotline missing baits can be quickly replaced by clipping on a fresh snood 3 mini clips can be purchased from most commercial fishing supply houses If you can t locate them locally you can order them from Ocean Products Research Inc at 800 627 6008 Price is 0 79 79 each Storage Store your trotline with baits attached and any unused bait in a barrel of strong brine solution called pickle in order to preserve it The pickle is made using 4 pounds of salt to 5 gallons of water You ll have it right when a raw potato or egg floats Carefully coil fake your trotline into the pickle barrel and set a basket on top to keep everything submerged Watermen say that not only does the pickle preserve the bait keeping it usable for many trips but also attracts crabs Make sure you test the consistency after each use adding salt to keep it just right Note Do not store chicken turkey neck baits in pickle since it does not work well Store chicken turkey necks in an old refrigerator instead Tips One 5 gallon bucket will store 750 feet of 5 32 inch trotline with baits attached Instead of using a liquid brine solution you can use dry salt instead Sprinkle a liberal amount several inches of salt in layers as you fake the line Working with a dry mixture is easier since no there is no liquid to spill Plus you can carry your storage containers to the boat and play out the line directly from the container Anchor and pendant line connected with a snap hook Attach bronze snap swivels to the ends of all your lines This allows you to easily connect multiple lines together to form a long trotline For example if you choose to use 750 foot sections you can connect 7 sections together to form a 1 mile trotline As you pull in your line you can quickly disassemble it by disconnecting the buoy lines the leader chains and the individual baited sections Other Equipment Dip Net You will need a good quality dip net or scap net Most watermen prefer using pre formed wire mesh net bags see photo at right as opposed to cotton twine or nylon since crabs don t tangle up in wire as easily and the wire net cuts through the water with significantly less resistance Others prefer cotton nets since they can be laid down flat on the washboard whereas rigid wire nets can roll overboard when set down Regardless of the material you choose for the net bag your dip net should have a 16 inch bow and a 7 foot handle Some watermen prefer longer handles but they have a tendency to break off easily Choose a dip net that is most comfortable for you Wire Mesh Dip Net Prop Stick Photo courtesy of Harvesting the Chesapeake Tools Traditions Prop Stick It is highly recommended that you rig your boat with a hinged prop stick a board usually a two by four mounted aft of amidships that extends out about 3 feet perpendicular to the starboard gunwale see photo at left A wide brass roller is mounted horizontally at the end between two vertical guides The trotline is pulled up with a gaff and laid on top the brass roller between the guides Thus as the crabber works his line the baits hopefully with crabs attached are gently lifted to the surface where they are netted just below the surface It s not hard to rig something like this up Some people use a household rolling pin as a roller Others fashion a large hook out of metal or

    Original URL path: http://www.bluecrab.info/crabbing/trotline.html (2016-05-02)
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  • Building a Crabpot
    the two by four as a guide bend the side up to form a 90 degree angle see Figure 3 Perform the same procedure to the other end of the wire Step 1 4 Figure 4 Properly bent section After both ends are bent you will have a U shaped piece of wire albeit a square one See Figure 4 Step 1 5 Figure 5 Double check your work Once

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