Summer season crab catch cards due soon

Leader News Staff
news@ptleader.com
Posted 9/28/22

The the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is reminder crabbers that their Puget Sound summer crab catch record cards are due by Oct. 1.

Come up empty this summer season? Doesn't …

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Summer season crab catch cards due soon

Posted

The the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is reminder crabbers that their Puget Sound summer crab catch record cards are due by Oct. 1.

Come up empty this summer season? Doesn't matter. Anyone who purchased a Puget Sound crab endorsement with their 2022-23 Washington state fishing license – or a license package like the Fish Washington or Get Outdoors licenses – has until Oct. 1 to submit their catch record card, even if they didn’t fish for or catch any crab this summer.

The summer season began in July and ran through Labor Day, Sept. 5. 

Officials noted that more than half of the 225,000 crabbers who purchased an endorsement in 2021 failed to report their catch by the October deadline. 

Catch record cards are used by shellfish managers with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, however, to better manage Puget Sound crab populations. 

Not reporting actually hurts prospects for future crabbing, according to Aaron Dufault, Puget Sound shellfish manager with WDFW.

“We know some people may get a crab endorsement when they buy their license, but never end up going crabbing or simply forget to report at the end of the season,” Dufault said.

“When that happens, we have to take a conservative approach to fill in those gaps, and assume that person caught some crab, whether they only got out on the water once or not at all,” he added.

Crabbers can report their catch by logging in to the Department of Fish and Wildlife’s online WILD licensing system at fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov/login, or by mailing their catch record card to the address printed on the card.  

Crabbers who fail to submit their catch record cards on time must pay a $10 administrative fee before they can purchase another Puget Sound crab endorsement as part of a future license. 

The winter season crabbing season runs from Sept. 6 through Dec. 31, all crab caught must be recorded on a winter catch record card, available for free at any license dealer in the state.

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