Dungeness crab: Toxic algae could delay Northern California [Nov 2015] season

Don Marshall, a fishermen out of Pillar Point Harbor in San Mateo County, said the Northern California fleet is worried that the commercial season, slated to open Nov. 15 in time for Thanksgiving, could be delayed for weeks and even months. The Nov. 7 opening of the recreational season could also be pushed back.

That’s a bummer . I always buy my crabs live from the monger in the Santa Cruz harbor . We’ll see how it goes .

It’s not going too well.

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While we sit out the delay on the local crab catch… Alioto-Lazio Fish Co. will have crab for the holiday from the Washington harvest.

I am placing my Thanksgiving order here:
415.673.5868 or toll free at 1.888.673.5868

So if the crab season is delayed a month or two, we would still have crab to eat, just a few months late. Perhaps the crabs would be bigger?

But if the crab season is cancelled and we have to wait until next November, would there be (approximately) double the number of crab next year?

Anyone know enough about how crab season works to enlighten us?

New tests provide glimmer of hope for Dungeness crab season

Until the waters get colder, we may never have crab to eat. And now it’s spread to OR and WA.

MercuryNews 12/3:

Oregon and Washington will open their commercial Dungeness crab fisheries this month, meaning there could well be fresh – if pricey – crab in grocery stores before Christmas.

But testing for domoic acid in California is still showing high levels in some areas.

Tests by the California Department of Public Health show levels of domoic acid, a biotoxin that has tainted this year’s crabs, have declined to safe levels from San Francisco to Santa Barbara. But it will take another round of clean tests for Fish and Wildlife to consider opening the commercial crab season in those areas, and levels of domoic acid remain high in northern counties from Sonoma to the Oregon border.


Was at Woodhouse yesterday and they weren’t optimistic that they’ll get any local crab this season. The Washington dungeness we had wasn’t the best. I posted on FB: Christmas without crab is worse than Christmas without Santa!

Truer words were never spoken! This is seriously bumming me out. I heard a report on NPR yesterday that made me want to cry. The biologist was stating that we can expect this to be a regular occurrence due to the changing climate. :sob:

Is it possible to find decent canned crab so I can at least make crab cakes?

I don’t remember the brand but I buy the canned crab at Costco for crab cakes and I think it’s super.

We were in Mill Valley over Thanksgiving and they had crab for $15/#. He said they got it from WA State Tribal fisheries. At that price we weren’t tempted.

I wonder if the same people who whine over no crab are working on the issue of climate. Just wondering.

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El Nino is generally considered to be a naturally occurring event. There are lots of things that global warming is known to impact, but the relationship between global warming and El Nino isn’t as concrete.

I wonder whether this means we should avoid local sea urchin?
uni guacamole at Progress

SFChronicle: Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties can now enjoy the seafood because tests showed the levels of domoic acid in the crabs have dropped to low or undetectable levels. [Dec 31,2015]

Those in Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa and San Miguel Islands and areas north of 35 degrees 40 minutes north latitude should still not eat crabs in the area, officials said.


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We’re seeing Dungeness crab harvested from Washington and Oregon’s Crab Season in the markets now.
Where are you shopping?


Nowhere . I like my crabs live and buy them locally . The ones I find at the store are tasteless and overcooked .:cry:

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SFChronicle (1/5/2016):>

“…a late-January opening is possible for Dungeness fishing along the Central and Northern California coast, leaving enough time to salvage at least part of the crabbing season, which officially closes June 30.”

Also, there is no commercial rock cod and a very low limit on the just-opened herring run off San Francisco.

If the link immediately above does not give you the whole article due to a paywall, try a search using these terms below without the quotation marks:

“Hopes for crab season run low; slight prospect for late January”

Caveat Emptor.
Neither have I ventured locally into tasting the ‘previously frozen’ wild crab that is available on ice…I am not eating bagels…or, pastrami…but I will risk disappointment for a taste of BBQ for brisket.

Sorry but I have not a clue what that means :slight_smile: Explain please.

don’t worry. just my warped sense of humor. delete it.
(if good isn’t available, then good enough is not)

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Fish market.
Credit: Ramesh SA, Flickr