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Author Topic: 3-15-18 Florida Crabbing  (Read 1040 times)
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SHELLFISH
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« on: March 16, 2018, 08:55:28 AM »

I went on another exploratory crabbing trip. I checked out 5 areas that had been producing good numbers last year and checked another new area. I threw the 5 ring traps in all areas for 1/2 hour each pulling them at least twice after a fifteen minute interval. If no crabs I would try another area. Well after checking all these areas I didn't see a single crab! I did get checked out by a National Park Service guy, I was good to go. I showed him all the garbage I had picked up along the my travels. He was very pleased and thanked me. We then talked for a half hour about where he has seen people crabbing. He said where we were at was the very best in the area. He stated that last week he had busted a guy there who was crabbing. He din't have a license had only had three crabs. The crabs were released and the guy got a citation. I should have asked how much the ticket was for. He also said that they are closing Rt 402 to Playalinda Beach (Beach Road) to crabbers because they were causing too many problems with traffic. He also said Black Point Wildlife Refuge is closed to crabbing and fishing.
I left that area and traveled to another crab spot that has always produced. There I finally found some crabs but it was already three o'clock. I stayed two hours and got seven good crabs. Things are getting a little slow down here right now but should start picking back up in a month or so.
The weather was sunny and cool with the highs only about 65 degrees with a stiff breeze from the east northeast. We had 39 degrees last night! We have not had any rain here for some time and most of these areas were very low. I did see several Gators along my travels and the most Roseate Spoonbill I have ever seen. They are a big  like a Flamingo with pink and red. I don't see too many of those.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2018, 09:05:30 AM by SHELLFISH » Logged

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tattoo
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« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2018, 09:02:42 AM »

nice report , nice to hear you got some
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SHELLFISH
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« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2018, 09:08:04 AM »

I wished I had stopped at the last area first!
This is the worst time of year to try and get some decent crabs down here but the best time as there is no heat right now.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2018, 09:26:56 AM by SHELLFISH » Logged

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tattoo
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« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2018, 09:16:46 AM »

Next time , you said you were exploring Wink Wink
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Chef Lar
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« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2018, 11:57:42 AM »

Good read. At least now you know where to go early season. Hopefully not too many gators.
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SHELLFISH
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« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2018, 12:51:51 PM »

I saw Gators out sunning yesterday!
Actually this is the last of the crabs from last year.  The 2018 season and crabs starts in about a month.
The trouble is these new crabs will only be 5-5.5 inches!
By the time they get to decent size, after a couple of new moons, it will be getting too hot to crab comfortably.
Also in about a month the Orlandoites start showing up! They will keep everything they catch: from 2.5 inches and up!
They will keep egger females and whole Stone Crabs. If they get caught, which rarely happens, they consider it a cost of fishing.
There is no regulations about size but there is about egger females and keeping whole Stone Crabs. The Stone Crab season ends in May 15th.
There is a size limit on their claws too.
Supposedly they have billboards in Orlando reading "New Smyrna Beach; Orlando's Beach".
Traffic on I-95 will be backed up during summer weekends with signs reading "Beach Full, choose another beach". Locals do not go out on
weekends or use the water because all the ramps and parks are full.
On 5-19-17 there were four people crabbing on a local dock. By 5-29-17 the dock was full of crabbers and fishermen; the parking lot was full.
By Saturday 6-17-17 the dock was full of crabbers with 34 traps in the water. This dock is only about 50' long! The crabs don't get a chance to grow up because they are all taken! You are allowed 10 gallons of whole crabs per licensed fisherman. They ignore this too and will fill up large coolers with small crabs.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2018, 01:29:31 PM by SHELLFISH » Logged

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« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2018, 11:48:42 PM »

That's insane! I went out boating in estero bay over the weekend and dropped my four pots. Luckily nobody took my honeyhole for my pots, so I was good to go. However, I've NEVER seen so many pots out!! SOOO many snowbirds wanting blue crabs. It dies down over summer big time in SWFL, can't wait.
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« Reply #7 on: March 19, 2018, 03:48:28 AM »

I guess I'm glad to be up here in the summer crabbing Grin
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