Seaside Crabbing – Shore Crabs

Crabbing at the seaside is the normal way of keeping the kids quiet for a few hours during a summer holiday but how many people know the Shore Crab is the species of crab most commonly caught?

Also known as the Green Crab and European Crab, the common shore crab is an extremely common and is found around the coasts of Britain and Ireland. It is also common around the coasts of north-west Europe

The common shore crab occurs on the shore from the high water mark down to depths of around 60 metres, and can inhabit estuaries. The diet of the common shore crab includes invertebrates such as worms, molluscs and crustaceans. Small molluscs and barnacles are taken by young crabs.

Some care should be taken whilst crabbing crabs will not suffer any unintentional harm and will stop them becoming too stressed;

  • Crabs naturally like to be under the cover of rocks or seaweeds so before you begin it is important fill your bucket with sea water and where possible add some stones and seaweed.
  • Slowly pull up the line and place the crabs gently in the bucket.
  • Avoid putting more than one male crab in a bucket as they can be aggressive.
  • It is important to limit the number of crabs in a bucket as they don’t naturally group together and they can become stressed. By putting up to three in a bucket you can watch what they do and how they move.
  • You will need to change the water and the crabs in the bucket regularly as the temperature rises.
  • Release the crabs near the water’s edge and watch close to where you caught them.
  • When you have finished, please take everything away with you.
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Stewart Parsons