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Commercial

Puget Sound Commercial Dungeness Crab Fishery

Note: The following regulations are the opening emergency regulations for the 2015-2016 season. In-season emergency regulations will be posted on this site as they occur. You can also call the Commercial Crab Hotline at the number posted to the left of this page for the latest emergency regulations.

Puget Sound is home to two fleets of commercial vessels, Tribal and State. The State commercial crab fleet possesses about 248 licenses. The fishery is currently limited to this number of licenses, however current license holders may transfer an existing license to a new party. Information on Tribal fishing in Puget Sound is available through the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission.

Crab Commercial Fishing Regions

Commercial Crab Fishery Information

The State emergency commercial fishery regulations:

Update: A regulation has been finalized that allows the retention and sale of any Tanner crab "by-catch" that is landed incidentally to the normal Dungeness crab fishery. This stipulation will be allowed in Region 1 and Region 3-1 only. The minimum size for Tanner crab is 4.5" across the largest width of the shell. The start time for this regulation is at 8:00 am, Tuesday, February 9th, 2016. All Tanner crab landed must be accounted for on a Fish Ticket and Quick Reported as required for Dungeness crab.

Region 1 and Region 3-1  remain open with a 50 pot per license per buoy tag limit.

Region 3-3 remains open with a 100 pot per license per buoy tag limit.

 

6th Emergency Regulation for the 2015-2016 Puget Sound Commercial Crab Season

 

ORDER NO. 15-453

                                          

 N E W   S E C T I O N

 

   WAC 220-52-04000K  Commercial crab fishery—Lawful and unlawful gear, methods, and other unlawful acts.

 

 Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-040:

 

(1)   Effective immediately, until further notice, it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 50 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Region 1 and Region 3-1.  Region 1 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, 21B, 22A and 22B.  Region 3-1 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 23A and 23B.

 

(2)   Effective immediately, until 6:00 p.m., December 30, 2015 it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 30 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Region 3-2.  Region 3-2 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 25E, 25A and 23D.

 

(3)   The remaining buoy tags per license per region must be onboard the designated vessel and available for inspection.

 

(4)   Effective 6:00 p.m., December 29, 2015, and until further notice, Crab Management Region 2 East and Region 2 West are closed.  Region 2 East includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 24A, 24B, 24C, 24D and 26A East. Region 2 West includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 25D, 25B and 26A West.

 

(5)   Effective 6:00 p.m., December 30, 2015, until further notice, Crab Management Region 3-2 will be closed.  Region 3-2 includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 25E, 25A and 23D.

 

(6)   Additional area gear limits. The following Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas are restricted in the number of pots fished, operated, or used by a person or vessel, and it is unlawful for any person to use, maintain, operate, or control pots in excess of the following limits: No commercial gear is allowed in that portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 25A west of the 123o 7.0’ longitude line projected from the new Dungeness light due south to the shore of Dungeness Bay.

                                          

                                                         

R E P E A L E R

 

   The following section of the Washington Administrative code is repealed:

 

WAC 220-52-04000J    Commercial crab fishery—Lawful and unlawful gear, methods, and other unlawful acts. (15-451)                                              

5th Emergency Regulation for the 2015-2016 Puget Sound Commercial Crab Season

 

ORDER NO. 15-451

                                                      

N E W   S E C T I O N

 

   WAC 220-52-04000J  Commercial crab fishery—Lawful and unlawful gear, methods, and other unlawful acts.

 

 Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-040:

 

(1)   Effective immediately, until further notice, it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 50 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Region 1 and Region 3-1.  Region 1 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, 21B, 22A and 22B.  Region 3-1 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 23A and 23B.

 

(2)   Effective immediately, until 6:00 p.m., December 31, 2015 it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 30 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Region 3-2.  Region 3-2 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 25E, 25A and 23D.

 

(3)   The remaining buoy tags per license per region must be onboard the designated vessel and available for inspection.

 

(4)   Effective 6:00 p.m., December 29, 2015, and until further notice, Crab Management Region 2 East and Region 2 West are closed.  Region 2 East includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 24A, 24B, 24C, 24D and 26A East. Region 2 West includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 25D, 25B and 26A West.

 

(5)   Effective 6:00 p.m., December 31, 2015, until further notice, Crab Management Region 3-2 will be closed.  Region 3-2 includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 25E, 25A and 23D.

 

(6)   Additional area gear limits. The following Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas are restricted in the number of pots fished, operated, or used by a person or vessel, and it is unlawful for any person to use, maintain, operate, or control pots in excess of the following limits: No commercial gear is allowed in that portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 25A west of the 123o 7.0’ longitude line projected from the new Dungeness light due south to the shore of Dungeness Bay.

                                           

N E W   S E C T I O N

  

   WAC 220-52-04600R  Puget Sound crab fishery--Seasons and Areas.                      

 

Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-046:

 

(1) Effective immediately, until further notice, it is permissible to fish for Dungeness crab for commercial purposes in the following areas:

(a) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 20A between a line from the boat ramp at the western boundary of Birch Bay State Park to the western point of the entrance of the Birch Bay Marina and a line from the same boat ramp to Birch Point.

(b) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 22B in Fidalgo Bay south of a line projected from the red number 4 entrance buoy at Cape Sante Marina to the northern end of the eastern most oil dock.

(c) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 22A in Deer Harbor north of a line projected from Steep Point to Pole Pass.

 

(2) Effective 6:00 p.m. December 29, 2015, until further notice, the following areas are closed to commercial crab fishing:

 

(a)  That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 25A west of the 123o 7.0’ longitude line projected from the new Dungeness light due south to the shore of Dungeness Bay.

(b) That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 23D west of a line from the eastern tip of Ediz Hook to the ITT Rayonier Dock.

(c) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 24A east of a line projected true north from the most westerly tip of Skagit Island and extending south to the most westerly tip of Hope Island, thence southeast to Seal Rocks, thence southeast to the green can buoy at the mouth of Swinomish Channel, thence easterly to the west side of Goat Island.

 (d) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 26A-W in Useless Bay north and east of a line from the south end of the Double Bluff State Park seawall (47°58.782'N, 122°30.840'W) projected 110 degrees true to the boulder on shore (47°57.690'N, 122°26.742'W).

(e) Port Gardner: That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Area 26A east of a line projected from the outermost tip of the ferry dock at Mukilteo, projected to the green #3 buoy at the mouth of the Snohomish River, and west of a line projected from that #3 buoy southward to the oil boom pier on the shoreline.

(f) Possession Point to Glendale: That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 26A east of a line that extends true north from the green #1 buoy at Possession Point to Possession Point, and west of a line from the green #1 buoy at Possession Point extending northward along the 200-foot depth contour to the Glendale dock.

(g) Langley: That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 24C shoreward of the 400-foot depth contour within an area described by two lines projected northeasterly from Sandy Point and the entrance to the marina at Langley.

                                                         

R E P E A L E R S

 

   The following sections of the Washington Administrative code are repealed effective 6:00 p.m. December 29, 2015:

 

WAC 220-52-04000H     Commercial crab fishery—Lawful and unlawful gear, methods, and other unlawful acts. (15-442)

 

WAC 220-52-04600Q     Puget Sound crab fishery--Seasons and Areas (15-442)

 

4th Emergency Regulation for the 2015-2016 Puget Sound Commercial Crab Season

 

ORDER NO. 15-442

                                                      

N E W   S E C T I O N

 

   WAC 220-52-04000H  Commercial crab fishery—Lawful and unlawful gear, methods, and other unlawful acts.

 Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-040:

 

(1) Effective 8:00 a.m. December 15, 2015, until further notice, it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 50 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Regions 1 and Region 3-1.  Region 1 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, 21B, 22A and 22B.  Region 3-1 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 23A and 23B.

 

(2) Effective 8:00 a.m. December 15, 2015, until further notice, it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more 30 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Region 2 East, Region 2 West and Region 3-2.  Region 2 East includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 24A, 24B, 24C, 24D and 26A-East.  Region 2 West includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 25B, 25D and 26A-West.  Region 3-2 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 23D, 25A and 25E.

                                                                                                        

(3) The remaining buoy tags per license per region must be onboard the designated vessel and available for inspection.

 

(4) Additional area gear limits. The following Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas are restricted in the number of pots fished, operated, or used by a person or vessel, and it is unlawful for any person to use, maintain, operate, or control pots in excess of the following limits: No commercial gear is allowed in that portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 25A west of the 123o 7.0’ longitude line projected from the new Dungeness light due south to the shore of Dungeness Bay.

 

N E W   S E C T I O N

  

   WAC 220-52-04600Q  Puget Sound crab fishery--Seasons and Areas.                       Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-046:

 

(1) Effective 8:00 a.m. December 15, 2015, until further notice, it is permissible to fish for Dungeness crab for commercial purposes in the following areas:

(a) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 20A between a line from the boat ramp at the western boundary of Birch Bay State Park to the western point of the entrance of the Birch Bay Marina and a line from the same boat ramp to Birch Point.

(b) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 22B in Fidalgo Bay south of a line projected from the red number 4 entrance buoy at Cape Sante Marina to the northern end of the eastern most oil dock.

(c) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 22A in Deer Harbor north of a line projected from Steep Point to Pole Pass. 

(d) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 26A-W in Useless Bay north and east of a line from the south end of the Double Bluff State Park seawall (47°58.782'N, 122°30.840'W) projected 110 degrees true to the boulder on shore (47°57.690'N, 122°26.742'W).

(e) Port Gardner: That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Area 26A east of a line projected from the outermost tip of the ferry dock at Mukilteo, projected to the green #3 buoy at the mouth of the Snohomish River, and west of a line projected from that #3 buoy southward to the oil boom pier on the shoreline.

(f) Possession Point to Glendale: That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 26A east of a line that extends true north from the green #1 buoy at Possession Point to Possession Point, and west of a line from the green #1 buoy at Possession Point extending northward along the 200-foot depth contour to the Glendale dock.

(g) Langley: That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 24C shoreward of the 400-foot depth contour within an area described by two lines projected northeasterly from Sandy Point and the entrance to the marina at Langley.

 

(2) Effective 8:00 a.m. December 15, 2015, until further notice, the following areas are closed to commercial crab fishing:

 

(a)  That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 25A west of the 123o 7.0’ longitude line projected from the new Dungeness light due south to the shore of Dungeness Bay.

(b) That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 23D west of a line from the eastern tip of Ediz Hook to the ITT Rayonier Dock.

(c) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 24A east of a line projected true north from the most westerly tip of Skagit Island and extending south to the most westerly tip of Hope Island, thence southeast to Seal Rocks, thence southeast to the green can buoy at the mouth of Swinomish Channel, thence easterly to the west side of Goat Island.                                                           

                                                                       

N E W   S E C T I O N

 

   WAC 220-69-24000P  Duties of commercial purchasers and receivers.     

   Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-69-240, effective 8:00 am, December 15, 2015, until further notice, it is unlawful for any wholesale dealer acting in the capacity of an original receiver of Dungeness crab taken by non-treaty fishers from Puget Sound to fail to report to the department the previous day’s purchases by 10:00 a.m. the following business day.  Reports must be made by fax to (425) 338-1066 or by e-mail at crabreport@dfw.wa.gov, and must specify the dealer name, dealer phone number, date of delivery of crab to the original receiver, and the total number of pounds of crab caught by non-treaty fishers, by Crab Management Region or by Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area.        

 

R E P E A L E R S

 

   The following sections of the Washington Administrative code are repealed effective 8:00 a.m. December 15, 2015:

 

WAC 220-52-04600P     Puget Sound crab fishery--Seasons and Areas (15-401)

 

WAC 220-69-24000N     Duties of commercial purchasers and receivers (15-365)

 

3rd Emergency Regulation for the 2015-2016 Puget Sound Commercial Crab Season

 

ORDER NO. 15-401

                                                                                                                                          

 N E W   S E C T I O N

  

   WAC 220-52-04600P   Puget Sound crab fishery--Seasons and Areas.

   Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-046:

 

(1)   Effective 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, October 28, 2015, and until further notice, Crab Management Region 1, Region 3-1 and Region 3-3 are closed.  Region 1includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, 21B, 22A and 22B. Region 3-1 includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 23A and 23B.  Region 3-3 includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 23C and 29.

 

(2)   Effective immediately, until further notice, the following areas are closed to commercial crab fishing:

 

(a)    All of Crab Management Region 2 West.  Region 2 West includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 25B, 25D and 26A West.

(b)   All of Crab Management Region 2 East.  Region 2 East includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 24A, 24B, 24C, 24D and 26A East.

(c)    All of Crab Management Region 3-2. Region 3-2 includes all waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 23D, 25A and 25E.

 

R E P E A L E R S

 

   The following sections of the Washington Administrative code are repealed effective 6:30 p.m. October 28, 2015:

 

WAC 220-52-04000G    Commercial crab fishery--Lawful and unlawful gear, methods, and other unlawful acts (15-384)

 

WAC 220-52-04600N     Puget Sound crab fishery--Seasons and Areas (15-384)

 

2nd Emergency Regulation for the 2015-2016 Puget Sound Commercial Crab Season

 

ORDER NO. 15-384

                                                                                                                                   

N E W   S E C T I O N

 

   WAC 220-52-04000G   Commercial crab fishery—Lawful and unlawful gear, methods, and other unlawful acts.

 Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-040:

 

(1) Effective 6:00 p.m., Sunday, October 18, 2015, until further notice, it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 50 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Regions 1 or Region 3-1.  These regions include Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, 21B, 22A, 22B, 23A and 23B.

 

(2) The remaining buoy tags per license per region must be onboard the designated vessel and available for inspection.

 

(3) Effective immediately until further notice, Region 2 East and Region 2 West are closed. Region 2 East includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 24A, 24B, 24C, 24D and 26A-E. Region 2 West includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 25B, 25D and 26A-W.

 

(4) Effective 6:00 p.m., Sunday, October 18, 2015, until further notice Region 3-2 will be closed. Region 3-2 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 23D, 25A and 25E.

                                                                     

N E W   S E C T I O N

  

   WAC 220-52-04600N  Puget Sound crab fishery--Seasons and Areas.                      

 

Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-046, effective 6:00 p.m., Sunday, October 18, 2015, until further notice, it is permissible to fish for Dungeness crab for commercial purposes in the following areas:

(1) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 20A between a line from the boat ramp at the western boundary of Birch Bay State Park to the western point of the entrance of the Birch Bay Marina and a line from the same boat ramp to Birch Point.

(2) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 22B in Fidalgo Bay south of a line projected from the red number 4 entrance buoy at Cape Sante Marina to the northern end of the eastern most oil dock.

(3) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 22A in Deer Harbor north of a line projected from Steep Point to Pole Pass.

 

R E P E A L E R S

 

   The following sections of the Washington Administrative code are repealed effective 6:00 p.m.   October 18, 2015:

 

WAC 220-52-04000F    Commercial crab fishery--Lawful and unlawful gear, methods, and other unlawful acts (15-365)

 

WAC 220-52-04600M  Puget Sound crab fishery--Seasons and   Areas (15-365) 

Initial Emergency Regulation for the 2015-2016 Puget Sound Commercial Crab Season

ORDER NO. 15-365

    WAC 220-52-04000F   Commercial crab fishery—Lawful and unlawful gear, methods, and other unlawful acts.

 Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-040:

(1) It is permissible to deploy Dungeness crab pots for commercial purposes (barging) starting at 8:00 a.m. October 1, 2015 until 7:00 p.m. October 2, 2015, in Region 1, Region 3-1, Region 3-2 and Region 3-3 from a vessel not designated on a person’s Puget Sound crab license, provided that the primary or alternate operator designated on the license is on board the non-designated vessel (“barge” vessel), and prior notice has been given as provided below. Crab pots may only be deployed during daylight hours.

(2) Barging is NOT allowed in Region 2 East or Region 2 West.  This includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 24A, 24B, 24C, 24D, 26A-E, 25B, 25D and 26A-W.

(3) The licensed owner must leave a telephone message at the Mill Creek annex office, (425) 775-1311 ext 126, or send an email to crabreport@dfw.wa.gov, detailing the following information:

            (a) Name and license number of licensed owner.

            (b) Name of designated primary operator if different from licensed owner.

            (c) Name of alternate operator if used to deploy pots from a non-designated vessel.

            (d) Buoy brand number and number of pots to be deployed from a non-designated vessel.

(e) Name and identification numbers (WN and/or Coast Guard) of the non-designated vessel.

(4) Additional area gear limits. The following Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas are restricted in the number of pots fished, operated, or used by a person or vessel, and it is unlawful for any person to use, maintain, operate, or control pots in excess of the following limits:

No commercial gear is allowed in that portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 25A west of the 123o 7.0’ longitude line projected from the new Dungeness light due south to the shore of Dungeness Bay.  

(5) Effective 8:00 a.m. October 1, 2015, until further notice, it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 50 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Regions 1, Region 3-1 or Region 3-2.  These regions include Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, 21B, 22A, 22B, 23A, 23B, 23D, 25A and 25E.

(6) Region 2 West opens 8:00 a.m. October 1, 2015, and closes at 6:00 p.m. October 7, 2015. During this opening it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 50 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Regions 2 West.  Region 2 West includes 25B, 25D and 26A-W.

(7) Region 2 East opens 8:00 a.m. October 1, 2015, and closes at 6:00 p.m. October 10, 2015. During this opening it is unlawful for any person to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 50 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Regions 2 East.  Region 2 East includes 24A, 24B, 24C, 24D and 26A-E.

(8) The remaining buoy tags per license per region must be onboard the designated vessel and available for inspection.

  WAC 220-52-04600M  Puget Sound crab fishery--Seasons and Areas.                      

Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-52-046:

(1) Effective 8:00 a.m. October 1, 2015, until further notice, it is permissible to fish for Dungeness crab for commercial purposes in the following areas:

(a) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 20A between a line from the boat ramp at the western boundary of Birch Bay State Park to the western point of the entrance of the Birch Bay Marina and a line from the same boat ramp to Birch Point.

(b) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 22B in Fidalgo Bay south of a line projected from the red number 4 entrance buoy at Cape Sante Marina to the northern end of the eastern most oil dock.

(c) Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 22A in Deer Harbor north of a line projected from Steep Point to Pole Pass.

(2) Effective 8:00 a.m. October 1, 2015, until 6:00 p.m. October 7, 2015, it is permissible to fish for Dungeness crab for commercial purposes in the following areas:Those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 26A-W in Useless Bay north and east of a line from the south end of the Double Bluff State Park seawall (47°58.782'N, 122°30.840'W) projected 110 degrees true to the boulder on shore (47°57.690'N, 122°26.742'W).

(3) Effective 8:00 a.m. October 1, 2015, until 6:00 p.m. October 10, 2015, it is permissible to fish for Dungeness crab for commercial purposes in the following areas:

(a) Port Gardner: That portion of Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Area 26A east of a line projected from the outermost tip of