Commercial crab fishery delayed on Washington’s south coast

tate shellfish managers have delayed the opening of the commercial Dungeness crab fishery on a portion of Washington’s southern coast to allow more time for tests to ensure that crabs are free of marine toxins.

State shellfish managers have delayed the opening of the commercial Dungeness crab fishery on a portion of Washington’s southern coast to allow more time for tests to ensure that crabs are free of marine toxins.

The commercial fishery from the Columbia River north to Klipsan Beach on the Long Beach Peninsula was scheduled to open Dec. 1. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) delayed the opening following talks last week with fishery managers in Oregon and California, where commercial crabbing is also closed.

Recent tests indicate crab caught along Washington’s ocean coast are safe to eat, but shellfish managers decided to conduct additional testing before opening the commercial fishery. Recreational crabbing will remain open in all coastal waters except Willapa Bay, which was closed earlier this month because of elevated toxin levels. Crabbing is also open in Puget Sound, where marine toxins in crab have not been an issue.

The department will review test results from the state Department of Health before setting an opening date on the south coast, said Dan Ayres, coastal shellfish manager for WDFW. Ayres said he hopes the test results allow for the season to open by mid-December.

“We’re taking extra precautions due to the high volume of crab typically caught within the first weeks of the commercial opening,” he said. “We want people to feel confident the crab they buy is safe to eat.” Ayres said commercial crabbers generally support WDFW’s decision.

Domoic acid, a natural toxin produced by certain types of marine algae, can be harmful or even fatal if consumed in sufficient quantities. Cooking or freezing does not destroy the toxin in shellfish.

WDFW typically opens the area north of Klipsan Beach to state commercial crabbing later in the season in coordination with tribal co-managers. Crab now coming into the market from tribal fisheries currently open along the central and northern Washington coast have been tested and are safe, Ayres said.

Persons with disabilities who need to receive this information in an alternative format or who need reasonable accommodations to participate in WDFW-sponsored public meetings or other activities may contact Dolores Noyes by phone (360-902-2349), TTY (360-902-2207), or email (dolores.noyes@dfw.wa.gov). For more information, seehttp://wdfw.wa.gov/accessibility/reasonable_request.html.

More in Life

Fun run will benefit animal rescue group

Grab your furry friend’s leash and head out to Lake Wilderness Park on Sept. 29.

Local Scout earns his wings

Kyle Ross Dunning is a member of Boy Scout Troop 422.

Beautify Enumclaw, Buckley | Slideshow

Many public spaces, like Enumclaw’s community garden by the library and Veterans Memorial Park, or Buckley’s Youth Center, were given makeovers by scored of energetic volunteers.

Enumclaw lessons helped lead to military success | Navy Outreach

“Growing up in a small town, it kind of helped me gauge different people and network in a way that would benefit me,” Nelsen said. “It is humbling growing up in a small town and I did not lose sight of where I came from.”

Flu season is coming; get your shots soon | Public Health Center

To help you decide when, where, and how to get vaccinated, Public Health Insider compiled answers to some of the most common questions they see regarding to flu vaccinations.

Answers may be hard to come

You’re on the edge of your chair. Curiosity is almost killing you;… Continue reading

Falls prevention event highlights awareness, action | Pierce County

This month is National Fall Prevention Month.

‘If You Love Me’ deserves a spot on your bookshelf

First tooth, first step. Every milestone your baby passed was reason for… Continue reading

Suicide rates in Washington continue rising | Department of Health

In 2017, 1,300 Washingtonians died by suicide, and from 2006 to 2017 suicide in Washington state increased by an average of 2.5 percent annually.

Most Read