Soft Crabs Trying to Shed but Winter Won’t Let Go

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Six straight days of blustery northern winds and cool temperatures last week have thrown a big wrench into what used to be a reliable first run of soft crabs. North Carolina’s first run is about over before it even got going strong. Up here in Maryland, we are hoping the larger peelers start to show up this week.

The peelers head for deeper (warmer) water in the channels when the temperatures drop. But all the peeler traps (peeler pots, bank traps, scrapers) are set in shallow water, and the net result is the peelers “disappear”, the crabbers catch none, and everyone is scratching their heads, wondering what happened to the soft crabs. We anticipate the Maryland run to crank up this week and peak the week of Memorial Day. (Full Newsletter)