It remained unclear how long the high levels of acid in the crabs would persist, according to the health department.
Habitat: Recorded from intertidal depths down to 570 feet but primarily found in shallow inshore environments—sandy and muddy bottoms, eelgrass beds and kelp beds. Rock crab landings for 1999 were 790,000 pounds and have averaged 1.2 million pounds per year from 1991-1999. Since Dungeness are illegal in San Francisco Bay (all waters inside the Golden Gate), this “Dungie” was returned to the water to grow and perhaps be caught another day. All of these crabs offer eating in the same league as the famous Dung… The picture “Kelp crab from the San Clemente Pier (missing part of a leg)” is not the Northern kelp crab (Pugettia producta), it’s a Southern kelp crab (Taliepus nutalli). Size: Males to 7.8 inches across the back, females to 6.2 inches.
The vendor calls this a racer crab – but I can not find any information on a racer crab.
The red rock crab is brick red in color, the brown crab is dark brown with red spots, the yellow crab is light brown to pale yellow with no spots. Coloring depends primarily on the type of food they’ve been eating and they are primarily nocturnal vegetarians (herbivores) whose favorite food is, no surprise, kelp! The three photos labelled as ‘antennarium’ are all Cancer productus. Probably the moss crab, L. crispatus.” His views were seconded by another teacher of marine biology specializing in crabs, Nin Gan, so we are going to go with the identification as a juvenile Loxorhynchus crispatus. Rock crab (Cancer anthonyi, Cancer productus, Cancer antennarius) is an excellent local alternative to both Pacific dungeness crab and Florida stone crab. The juvenile crabs tend to be darker than the adults. Here’s the official response that was given by the California Fish and Wildlife Department to a similar question a few years back. However, they can be distinguished from rock crabs by their lack of red spotting on the underside. Trap harvested year round in the cool waters of the Pacific Ocean off Southern California and Baja California, our Baja rock crabs average 1 to 1.1 pounds. Rock Crab from the Elephant Rock Pier in Tiburon.
Habitat: Although recorded from the low intertidal zone down to a depth of 300 feet, primarily lives in shallow inshore environments on rocky substrate—rocky reefs, boulder-strewn beaches, and gravel beds (they cannot live on bottoms of mud or pure sand). Sheepies are most abundant in southern California. Most anglers use a bucket of water or a wet gunnysack to keep the crabs fresh until it is time to go home. Note: the proposed species name is Romaleon not Romulan, these crabs did not come from the planet Romulus nor are they related to Vulcans. But anyway, it's reversed, the rock crab is on top and red crab is on the bottom. Orders over $300 qualify for free shipping. Catalina Offshore Products. M. anthonyi also tends not to decorate itself and tends not to have hairy legs. Comments: Together with rock crabs they make up the majority of crabs caught by sportsmen. Some people in the group insist we should only keep one claw from each crab so they can be put back to grow another claw and still live. Size: Males to 7.8 inches across the back, females to 6.2 inches. Oregon officials on Tuesday advised people harvesting crabs on the state's southern coast to clean the crustaceans thoroughly before eating them because of domoic acid risk. Piers: Found at piers located in rocky areas, primarily those from Santa Barbara north. Probably the moss crab, L. crispatus. They are all caught using traps - the same way that dungeness crab is caught. I had seen a similar occurrence a few years ago at the Port Hueneme Pier. The crab has eight long legs and two claws. Yellow crabs are noted for large black-tipped pincers on the claws with the claws large and smooth resembling those of rock crabs. 5202 Lovelock Street
Due to their relatively small size, slender crabs are frequently mistaken for juvenile Dungeness crabs.
Shoreline: Occasionally taken by shoreline anglers.  Distribution. Many of the small rock crabs seen snapping and seemingly blowing bubbles, in tidepools and around rocks, will be small members of this species. Species: Loxorhynchus grandis, (Stimpson, 1857): Loxorhynchus (bent nose) grandis (large). In the fall the adults move to deeper water where they congregate, feed, and mate. Rarely are the two species found in the same estuary habitats.  R. antennarium is also caught throughout Southern California commercially. The crabs are then placed into cold water and cleaned. The tops of the claws are sharp-edged, with two or three prominent teeth, but these edges are not the saw tooth-like serrations seen in Dungeness. The crab reaches a good size, yields more meat per crab than most other species, and the meat is firm and delicious. Fish you may catch include halibut, mackerel, bass, salmon, sharks and striped bass. Species: Cancer antennarium (Stimpson, 1856). Catching Dungeness Crabs at Brookings Harbor, Oregon, just four miles from the California state line. I plan parties and excursions at a luxury senior retirement community in Palo Alto. Apparently one of their favorite foods are green crabs, which is good since green crabs are an invasive species that should be eliminated.  Mating typically takes place in June, and occurs shortly after the females have molted. Live crabs are cooked by dropping them into boiling salt water, waiting for the boil to return, and then cooking for another 15 minutes.
Piers: Occasionally seen at most piers from Santa Barbara north. Habitat: Recorded from the low intertidal zone down to a depth of 410 feet with favorite haunts including haunts and pier pilings. It is found along California’s coastline, from Baja California to Washington. The crabbing suspensions would mark the first time in memory that a fishery has been closed in California due to domoic acid contamination but outbreaks of the toxin have prompted seafood health advisories in the past, Traverso said. In these far northern waters Dungeness are common and at times a nuisance (if you’re an angler concentrating on fish). Alternate Names: Pacific rock crab, California rock crab, brown rock crab or just plain rock crab. Identification: Yellow crabs have an oval-shaped, fairly broad and hard shell.  Only the juveniles live in the intertidal zone. Most pier-caught Dungeness are taken on piers from Pacifica north. Is it legal to keep only one claw or do we need the entire crab to allow the wildlife officer to verify? They do not tolerate low salinity as well as some crabs and thus are not seen in estuaries as often as some species.
Size: Males to 10.7 inches or more across the back, females to 4.5 inches. They are taken at Trinidad Pier north of Eureka and around Citizen’s Dock in Crescent City; they are the main “rock crabs” taken in northern California. Identification: Red crabs have a wide, hard shell with large, black-tipped pincers on the claws. Red crab (although possibly a rock crab) from the Elephant Rock Pier in Tiburon.
M. anthonyi is an ecologically important species. The color of the Dungeness is generally light reddish brown to gray on the back (often with light streaks and spots), with a purplish wash anteriorly; the underside is whitish to light orange, the inner and upper sides of the anterior legs with crimson or purple.
Not only was this true regarding fish but also in relation to a number of other strange and unusual creatures. They do not tolerate low salinity brackish environments as well as some species and are usually not found in estuaries (although seasonally found in sloughs and bays). If you appreciate Ken's writings on fishing, please consider making a donation for this unique content. You can use this recipe for any type of crab… On one drop to the bottom I hooked something heavy and as I pulled it up realized it must be one of the crabs. Similar to blue crabs, US-produced rock crabs are sustainably harvested and have a nice sweet crab flavor. A big yellow crab from the Hermosa Beach Pier. Required fields are marked *, You may use these HTML tags and attributes:
. Hi Ken, I’m an instructor at Saddleback College with a marine biology background specializing in crabs! Although it would seem to be a natural area, I have seen few of these caught at the Point Arena Pier.
Good thing because I am a fisherman, not a crabber. The mystery crab is a juvenile Loxorhynchus, not Oregonia. I had been fishing out at the end of the Redondo Sportfishing Pier for some bonito and mackerel but unfortunately those fish were not cooperating and I eventually decided to try on the bottom. A sheep crab (spider crab) from the Cayucos Pier in 2007. The tail flap in the female has a great deal of red, as does the tail flap of the female rock crab. The crabs use these claws for defense and to rip apart their food. They use their smaller. The California rock crab fishery is made up of three species - the yellow rock crab (C. anthonyi), the brown rock crab (C. antennarius), and the red rock crab (C. productus). Size: Males reach 4.3 inches across the back, females 3.5 inches across the back. Food Value: Although sport fishermen are able to catch large numbers of these crabs, commercial fishermen land few.
Piers: Found at piers located in rocky areas, primarily those from Santa Barbara north.
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