Soft crabs are notorious for their disappearing act, and last week was no exception. Ten days ago, crab runs near Savannah, Georgia, and Charleston, South Carolina, were in full swing. However, colder temperatures here made the prospect of spring and live soft crabs seem distant.
Ironically, now that the weather has warmed up and demand for soft crabs has increased, their supply has dwindled. To find the next significant crab estuary, one must look north of Charleston to the Pamlico Sound in North Carolina. It will take several weeks for the water to warm up enough to stimulate the crabs to molt.
Consequently, it is expected that the next sizable run of peelers will not begin until mid to late April. Patrons should be prepared for potential fluctuations in soft crab availability and pricing during this transitional period.