CDFW News | CDFW continues to partially restrict recreational crab traps and delay commercial Dungeness crab fishing to protect whales from entanglement and due to poor crab quality

CDFW continues to partially restrict recreational crab traps and delay commercial Dungeness crab fishing to protect whales from entanglement and due to poor crab quality

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) continues to temporarily restrict recreational crab traps in Fishing Zones 3, 4, 5, and 6 due to the presence of humpback whales and the possibility from getting entangled in the traps. However, the recreational crab trap restriction for Fishing Zones 1 and 2 will be lifted on November 28, 2022 at 9am. cheat restriction.

The commercial Dungeness crab fishery in fishing zones 3-6 will also be delayed due to the presence of large numbers of humpback whales and the potential for line entanglement and trapping in this fishery.

CDFW anticipates the next risk assessment to take place on or before December 7, 2022, at which time CDFW Director Charlton H. Bonham will re-evaluate the temporary restriction on recreational crabbing and fishing delay commercial in fishing zones 3-6. That risk assessment is expected to report on the potential for a commercial fishing opening and recreational trap restriction modification in Fishing Zones 3-6 on December 16, 2022.

“We appreciate discussions with the California Dungeness Crab Gear Task Force regarding the risk of entanglement,” said Director Bonham. “Ultimately, we must rely on the best available science and make management decisions based on the Risk Assessment Mitigation Program (RAMP) regulations. CDFW remains committed to providing fishing opportunities when the risk of entanglement is low, which is consistent with our management approach since the implementation of RAMP.”

In addition, pursuant to Fish and Game Code 8672.2, Director Bonham also delayed the Northern California Dungeness crab business season due to poor crabmeat quality test results (PDF) for the counties of Mendocino, Humboldt and Del Norte (Fishing Zones 1 and 2). The commercial Dungeness crab fishery in this area is delayed until 00:01 am Friday December 16, 2022 pending another round of meat quality testing. If the results indicate good quality, the fishery will open and will be preceded by a 64 hour gear setting period beginning at 8:01am on Tuesday, December 13, 2022.

For more information related to the risk assessment process, visit CDFW’s Whale Safe Fisheries page or for more information on the Dungeness crab fishery, visit www.wildlife.ca.gov/crab.

Media Contacts:
Ryan Bartling, CDFW Marine Region, (415) 238-2638
Jordan Traverso, CDFW Communications, (916) 212-7352

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *