The crabbing in Yaquina Bay was great for my friend CJ and me. We managed to bag 17 Dungeness crabs during the 3 hours we crabbed from the dock using chicken legs and thighs baited to 4 Crab Max crab traps. This was CJ’s first crabbing adventure, and proves you are never too old to embark on a new adventure.
We used Bill’s method to determine if the crabs were too soft to keep. CJ squeezed the first segment of the first walking leg to see if the shell gave when he applied pressure to it. If the first segment of the first walking leg gives return the crab to the bay. If the shell of the first walking segment is hard grasp the crab from behind holding the crab between your fingers and thump. Position your thumb in the middle of crab’s abdominal flap and gently squeeze. If the abdominal flap compresses the crab is not completely full, either keep the crab or return it to the bay. We recommend returning all soft crab to the bay.
We kept 17 Dungeness crabs and 1 medium sized red rock crab. We did not catch any large red rock crabs and CJ wanted to take one home to taste the difference in the crab meat between Dungeness crabs and red rock crabs. We returned a half of dozen legal sized Dungeness Crabs with soft first walking leg segments to the bay and kept all the others. Click on the images to enlarge them.