Dungeness crab season is coming up, but be prepared for the new trap regulations.
CALIFORNIA- Nov. 6 is the expected start of the recreational season for Dungeness crab fishing, and Nov. 1 marks the beginning of new crab trap regulations.
The California Fish and Game Commission adopted new regulations for the recreational crab fishery in late 2020. The amended regulations include the following new requirements when fishing with crab traps:
- A standardized buoy and additional red buoy marker for each trap
- All crab traps must be serviced at least every nine days
- A Recreational Crab Trap Validation is required when fishing crab traps
- A limit of 10 traps per person
It is also pertinent to note that the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) Director can now implement a season delay or early season closure due to marine life entanglement risk.
Dungeness crab season begins Dec. 1, 2021. It lasts until July 15, 2022, for districts six (ocean waters of the state from the northern boundary of the state to the west end of the north jetty at the entrance to Humboldt Bay; excluding all streams, sloughs, and lagoons), seven (ocean waters of the state from the west end of the north jetty at the entrance to Humboldt Bay to the southern boundary of Mendocino County; excluding all streams, sloughs, and lagoons), eight (entrance to Humboldt Bay and that portion of Humboldt Bay lying north of a line running east from south jetty apron; excluding streams, sloughs, and lagoons), and nine (includes that portion of Humboldt Bay lying south of a line running east from south jetty apron; excluding all streams, sloughs, and lagoons). For all other districts, the season will begin on Nov. 6, 2021, and last until June 30, 2022.
The new regulations are in effect as of Nov. 1, 2021. The recreational crab trap validation can be purchased online at https://www.ca.wildlifelicense.com/internetsales/ as well as from other approved license sales agents. For more information regarding trap regulations and recreational crab fishing, please visit https://fgc.ca.gov/Regulations/2020-New-and-Proposed#29_80.