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ODF&W: Dungeness Crab Season Delayed
The opening of the ocean commercial Dungeness crab season from Point Arena, California, and north will be delayed at least through December 15th to allow the quality of the crab to improve.
The Dungeness crab season along the Oregon coast usually opens on December 1st, but can be delayed to ensure a high-quality product to consumers and avoid wastage of the resource. Crab quality testing in early November showed the majority of test areas coast wide did not meet the minimum pre-season test criteria. Fishery managers in Oregon, Washington and California met and decided to delay the opening.
A third round of crab quality testing will occur late this month or early December, and the results will be used to determine if the ocean commercial season should open December 16th, be further delayed in all three states, or be split into two areas with different opening dates. The delayed opening date will allow for the crab to fill with more meat and provide the three states with more information for setting an appropriate commercial crab season opening schedule.
In conjunction with the delayed ocean commercial season, commercial harvest of Dungeness crab in Oregon bays will close at 12:01am on December 1st, but may re-open if the ocean commercial fishery opens in December. Recreational harvest of Dungeness crab in the ocean off Oregon will open December 1st as scheduled. Recreational harvest of crab in Oregon’s bays will remain open.