DNR Lifts Restrictions For Catching Female Blue Crabs

BALTIMORE (WJZ)—More crabs. A healthier outlook for the Chesapeake Bay means the Department of Natural Resources has lifted some restrictions for commercial crabbers.

Andrea Fujii explains these changes may affect your dinner plans.

Business is booming at Lowers’ Crab Shack and Market. They have more orders than they have crabs.

But this fall they’ll meet more of their demand when the Department of Natural Resources increases the catch limits for female blue crabs.

“It definitely helps us,” said Jesse Lowers, local crabber. “It puts more money on the boat to pay our expenses every day.”

The DNR made the decision after the blue crab winter dredge survey showed the crab population is at the second highest level since 1997. Experts say this increase won’t affect rebuilding the crab population.

“When guided by science and we put the right restrictions in place it can actually lead to a much larger and growing and sustainable resource,” said Gov. Martin O’Malley.

Starting September through Nov. 10, licensed commercial crabbers can catch two more bushels a day–up to 12. Commercially licensed crabbers are prohibited from harvesting female crabs between June 1 and June 15.

Right now Lowers brings in 45 bushels a day, and he expects that number to significantly rise.

That’s good news for crab lovers.

“The more crabs, the lower the price,” said Lowers.

The DNR says all other commercial and recreational crabbing regulations will remain the same.

  • chicken necker

    Leave the ban on females and that means more crabs for the future

  • pigeon

    Too soon to make this kind of move. DNR people have water logged brains! And how stupid to think the price of crabs will get lower because of more crabs – most people don’t like females! Seems to me if you do more crabbing, especially pulling up loads of females, that would actually cause a decrease in population. HELLO!!! History lesson not learned?

    • Azreael

      You are right most people don’t buy female crabs to just eat. Female crabs are mostly used in prepackaged crab meat sold at the grocery store seafood counters and commercially made crab soup and crab cakes. Lowering the restrictions on the females will mean they will be using less male crabs for these things and more females. In turn this will lower the price of the males.

  • James Tibbs

    It’s just amazing how the department of no regulations-DNR. sees fit to cater to the lobbyists representing the comercial crabbers. Lets catch more female crabs, so they the crabbers can ship them to Japan, or sell the meat for crab cakes, and if there aren’t any crabs in 2012, or 13, they can say its because of the recreational crabbers. The whole system is so crooked, just like the EPA. They’re killing the Susquahanna by letting the states of New York, and Penna. continue with the practice of fraking for natural gas. They are so sad, and incompetent. It is high time that the governor of the socialist state of Maryland does something for the state, rather than for himself.

  • James Tibbs

    Folks You know that its all about money, aint a damn thing funny. This decision stinks to the high heavens. You will see more and more of this kind of crookery, and the fools are following the white house, anything goes.

  • Harold Berry

    The video doesn’t match the story. This is the worst news website on the planet!

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