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Author Topic: Female Crabs  (Read 7581 times)
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Jersey_crab_girl
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« on: June 15, 2005, 03:55:46 PM »

Please note that there is a lot of misinformation being circulated about the female blue crab and whether she has ever released eggs. Some people wrongly believe that sooks taken from the brackish waters of the mid to upper Chesapeake Bay have released eggs (spawned) and are therefore fair game. This is simply not true. When a Sally crab turns sexually mature (sook), she immediately mates with a male. But, instead of fertilizing her eggs, the male's sperm is stored inside her for use at a later time. Here's where we clear up the confusion: Mated, Yes. Spawned, No. There's a big difference between the two! After mating, the sook will migrate to mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. It is here, in the high-salinity waters of the extreme lower Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic ocean, where she fertilizes her eggs and spawns.

What does this mean in plain English? It means that the vast majority of sooks taken from Maryland and Virginia waters are females that have never released any eggs. Think about this fact the next time you take a sook from these waters.

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procrabber
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« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2005, 04:45:47 PM »

yet again this monster arises
 and still most evidence suggests that:
1 you are right about the spawning etc
2 there is more convincing evidence that the crab population is not determined by spawning success of female crabs (unless they dip below a critical threshold which is much lower than current population in the eastern seaboard), yet the population is more determined by available habitat for juvanile 1-3" crabs, predation on this age group, food availability and perhaps most importantly, weather. 
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Jersey_crab_girl
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« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2005, 05:22:09 PM »

 Just thought it was interesting info for people who didn't know. People can do what they want with female crabs it doesn't matter to me. I'm just here to post my thoughts, crabbing experiences and have fun.
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Black Irish
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« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2005, 07:21:08 AM »

Just thought it was interesting info for people who didn't know. People can do what they want with female crabs it doesn't matter to me. I'm just here to post my thoughts, crabbing experiences and have fun.

I appreciate your thoughts & opinions JCG. Most, but not all on here will agree with you on the topic of keeping females. What PC says I believe is also true - the eggs and juveniles will not survive if the conditions are poor. Last year, above the bay bridge in the upper reaches of the bay, the SAV thrived like I haven't seen in a long time. This year looks like it's going to be the same or better. The water has, IMHO cleared up in some areas. Maybe it was Isabel, two years ago, maybe it was the higher than average rainfall last year, maybe it is because some offending WWTP's have reduced/stopped overflows into the bay? I can't answer that. But I like what I'm seeing.  Cool
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Jersey_crab_girl
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« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2005, 10:37:25 AM »

Thank You Black Irish, I was not trying to start a war. It does not bother me if you nor anyone else keeps females, it is your right to. What does get under my skin is those who keep everything they catch legal size or not they keep them which there not even worth cleaning. I see this often. Do people think more crabs the more meat (not always true) size matters.
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Black Irish
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« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2005, 10:47:13 AM »

No wars here!  Grin And yes there are some who keep everything they catch  Angry . It's just plain stupid because like you say, they aren't even worth picking. Maybe they eat them shell and all!  Grin
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Jersey_crab_girl
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« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2005, 11:13:16 AM »

Thats to funny, you never know they may. Have you had any luck crabbing this year yet?  I went out crabbing last weekend to Tuckerton for about 5 hrs and caught one 5 inch jimmy. And went to 5 different spots. It's still pretty slow. Going to take the boat out this weekend and see how I make out not sure where I'm going to go out yet. Hope it picks up soon.
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Black Irish
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« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2005, 12:07:50 PM »

I have not been out crabbing. I've tried a few handlines while out on the boat fishing or whatever. They weren't here yet as of last Friday 6/10. I won't be able to get out again for a couple of weeks but when I do, I will be taking the trotline.  Cool Good luck to you this weekend.
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Jersey_crab_girl
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« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2005, 01:29:21 PM »

Thanks, Good luck to you also!!
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mrscharms
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« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2005, 12:20:19 AM »

Well, Jersey Crab Girl...have you had any more luck?  Almost a month has gone by with this post! 

Whenever I catch a female, which is not very often...I just toss her back....I don't want to take any chances that she might be responsible for any more new baby jimmies!!

You can all do what you want with this thing...I simply don't keep any females.

Janice
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crabsrlicious
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« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2005, 11:10:25 PM »

Me either Janice and Jersey_Girl.......nice to see us females are sticking together....... Wink :-*literally!!!!!!!!!!!

Marg
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Jersey_crab_girl
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« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2005, 12:39:21 AM »

Yes, it is nice to see us females are sticking together! I believe in throwing the females back, but I don't condemn those who don't. I have only been out crabbing a few times this year so far. The last time I went out I caught I keeper. Going to out crabbing tomorrow. I have been busy with my boat going out in the Delaware River. I haven't been down the shore much this year yet. But now I will be taking my boat out crabbing and I will let you know how I make out.
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tattoo
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« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2005, 01:11:05 PM »

GOOD luck J.C.G  hope you catch a bunch. keep us posted.
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« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2005, 08:40:08 PM »

What about the small soft crabs they keep also, dont forget about them too!!!!!!
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Crab A Lot
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« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2005, 09:57:20 PM »


         Jersey-crab-girl,

                                The female crab lives about three years,in Maryland its legal to take mature female crabs any size ( That the law) inmature female crabs no, sponge female crabs no,after July 14 05 51/4" crabs. Grin Grin Grin

         Crab a lot!
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Chesapeake Bay Crabs are the best!!!!!!!!

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mrscharms
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« Reply #15 on: July 16, 2005, 10:36:37 PM »

Well, I guess I spoke too soon about never catching females!! Today was a glorious, yet bad crabbing day.  We went out to Holts Landing...I originally planned to go clamming, but the timing got all screwed up as far as low tide was concerned...so went crabbing instead.  I have not seen crabbing action like this in many years...every time I went to pull up a line, there was a crab on it!  Unfortunately, most of them were very hungry females..put them right back.  Had to keep moving around.  Finally wound up with 8 nice sized jimmies...but that ain't many when you have three crab hungry kids at home!  But the action was awesome.  I guess I got the females because I was in salty water....I have been crabbing last year in very brackish waters, therefore, have no contact with the females.

Then my boat wouldn't start...luckily, Bobby came with me and he brought his kayak and he towed me in paddling...poor guy!  Well, about 1/3 of the way back, I tried to start her up and she went.  So at least he got spared a lot of backache!

Janice
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Felinis
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« Reply #16 on: July 18, 2005, 11:25:07 AM »

Crab A Lot:

I would be interested to know where you learned that Maryland females live for three years.
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Jersey_crab_girl
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« Reply #17 on: July 18, 2005, 11:51:35 AM »

Mrscharms, Tattoo..

     Glad to hear you did good crabbing. Sorry to hear about your boat. But thats good that everything worked out. Boats can be a pain in the butt, but there great to have. I love my boat I would never not own a boat.
      So I went out crabbing Saturday for about 9 hours and brought home a dozen crabs. I went to Tuckerton to a few different spots then I tried Waretown. The biggest was 6.5 jimmy the rest were 6. Only caught one female she was about 5in she went back. Kind of a slow day but all in all it's always great to get out and go crabbing.....Take care, Kelly
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CHIEF
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« Reply #18 on: July 18, 2005, 12:00:17 PM »

Jersey
where in tuckerton did you go I go to the first bridge and all i catch are throw backs.
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Black Irish
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« Reply #19 on: July 18, 2005, 12:05:53 PM »

Crab A Lot:

I would be interested to know where you learned that Maryland females live for three years.

http://www.blue-crab.org/lifecycle1.htm

Scroll down to the adults section.
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