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Author Topic: stone crabs and water depth, temp  (Read 2729 times)
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indra07726
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« on: July 09, 2005, 01:15:05 AM »

When I was in Beaufort, NC for the summer we used to be able to walk into the water along a pier and net stone crabs in very shallow water. Like 2-4 feet of water. 

Down here in southwest Florida everyone I speak to gives me funny looks when I tell them this.  They said down here you have to go into pretty deep water to get stone crabs.  Nobody catches them off the piers, but dives for them or sets traps out off boats offshore.  Can I get stone crabs off a pier that goes far out into the water (during season of course) down here in Florida?

The only reason I could think of is water temperature.  Maybe in North Carolina, where the water is relatively cooler, the stone crabs are willing to go into shallow water.  Whereas here in Florida, they go to the deeper, cooler water.  Does anyone know what the reason for the difference is for sure?

By the way, during that summer in the marine lab at Beaufort I had this huge blue crab, easily 8"  tip-to-tip.  I put it in this tank with my friend's stone crab, and the blue crab was terrified and wanted no part of the stone crab.  The blue crab was trying frantically to get out of the tank.  The stone crab didn't seem to care and didn't move. I thought blue crabs were fearless.  I don't think it wanted any part of that giant crusher claw on the stone crab . . .
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beach bum
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« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2005, 10:11:20 AM »

While crabbing for blue crabs, I've caught 3 stone crabs so far this year from a pier on the Indian River south of Daytona Beach in about 3-5 feet of water. The first was May 16th, the day after stone crab season ended.
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Crabin' - Probably the most fun you can have with your clothes on.
indra07726
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« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2005, 10:52:59 AM »

Thanks Beach Bum.  I'm down here in Lee County in southwest Florida.  I'm completely new to Florida and am not so familiar with the geography.  I believe you're a few hours north so the water is probably colder there.  I wish I could catch stone crabs off a pier also during stone crab season.  I'm not sure if it will happen down here.

How big were the stone crabs that you caught?  Were the crusher claws big?
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beach bum
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« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2005, 09:41:19 AM »

I don't know how big stone crabs can get but these seemed small to me, maybe 5" across.
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