Ending the year on a fish-full note, Emeryville Sportfishing sent out 80 anglers in three boats on New Year’s Eve day. The catch: 750 Rockfish and 144 Lingcod. Dungeness Crab enthusiasts are still awaiting the opening of crab season in the San Francisco Bay area.
Details from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and the Fish and Game Commission follow. Areas still closed to crab fishing include:
Commercial Dungeness crab fishery statewide;
Recreational Dungeness crab fishery north of 35° 40′ N Latitude (Piedras Blancas Light Station);
Commercial and recreational rock crab fisheries North of 35° 40′ N Latitude (Piedras Blancas Light Station); and
Commercial and recreational rock crab fisheries in state waters around San Miguel, Santa Rosa and Santa Cruz Islands.
They did lift the ban for Dungeness below 35° 40′ N Latitude (Piedras Blancas Light Station), but despite several weeks of samples below alert levels, the CDPH (California Department of Public Health) and OEHHA (Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment ) still recommend that consumers not eat the viscera (internal organs, also known as “butter” or “guts”) of crabs. They are also recommending that water or broth used to cook whole crabs be discarded and not used to prepare dishes such as sauces, broths, soups or stews. This precaution is being recommended to avoid harm in the unlikely event that some crabs taken from an open fishery have elevated levels of domoic acid. Stay tuned for the Dungeness crab season update.