How to Catch Blue Crabs – All You Need to Know

Catching blue crabs is not tough, in contrast, it determining as one of favorite outdoor activity. Also, it is an inexpensive way to prepare and enjoy a meal. But do you know how to catch blue crabs efficiently? Here are four preparation steps, with few helpful tips and two crabbing methods you should acquire to get more successful results.

Why this blue crab attracts many crabbers?

Blue crab catching is always being fun and rewarding that many people opt for a weekend. Indeed, catching blue crabs is relatively simple as you do not have to prepare many special types of equipment.

Also, crabbers regard blue crabs as a kind of fairly aggressive crabs. Hence, you would not hesitate holding them from behind as their point claws just give a minor pinch.

Four steps to prepare the blue crab catching

Check your local regulation

In order to catch blue crabs legally, you should check your state license requirements for the allowance of crab’s characteristic and size. Besides, the non-commercial crab traps are limited at five, normally.

Determine the blue crab’s hot spot

Determine the blue crab’s hot spot

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You would find blue crabs easily in shallow and marshy areas such as estuaries, tidal creeks. Actually, they have a habit of hiding in the mud at the bottom. Particularly, you can find the larger male blue crab near grassy areas.

Additionally, the blue crabs often live along the east coast of Northam Arica, the Louisiana Southern and the Gulf of Mexico.

Because its hot spot would not be constant, you should patiently find. After determining the right spot, you need to clarify the length of line needed to throw and trap a crab. For further information about the regional hot spot, you can check at the local hot spot’s site.

Determine right time to have a great catch of blue crabs

You can get a dozen of crabs that vary from small to large in the crab dredge season. Particularly, it starts on the 1 December and ends on the 31 March.

Moreover, fisherman usually find the blue crab often hibernate out of the mud during the winter. When the weather is cold, blue crabs would hide at the bottom that requires you to find them in deeper water.

Determine right time to have a great catch of blue crabs

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Besides, many regular crabbers get used to crabbing at one hour before the sunset and one-haft hour after the sunrise. Especially, you can get the best catch during the early morning. However, on hot days when the sun is at its peak, you hardly find the blue crab.

Also, it’s essential to check the local tide chart before heading out for crabbing. In my experiences, the blue crab often appears around high tide.

Exploit an attractive bait

You are strongly advised to use a chicken neck or turkey wings as the blue crab’s bait. You can purchase these types of baits in any market or grocery stores with a cheap cost. Then, you drop a line and wait for minutes as it often takes a while until the crab can smell the bait.

Exploit an attractive bait

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That’s why any strong scent baits such as an oily fish, a fish head, or a dead Mullet can lure the blue crabs effectively. However, make sure you attach the bait securely right at the center of the trap. This is because a blue crab can totally get the bait and leave the trap un-baited without your notice.

How to catch blue crabs efficiently

Commercial crabbing methods

Catch the crab on the big boat

Commercial crabbers often go crabbing with roughly 200 pots a day. First, you need a wire mesh rectangle that is attached to the buoy to a catch crab. Each crap pot is located 50 feet away from another on a straight line. And you can pull the trap out of the water with a rope wrapped around a boat’s motorized wheel.

You could catch blue crabs by using a trot line or a topless crab trap with a chicken neck as a bait. Then, you attach an empty plastic bottle or a small buoy to the trap’s bottom to let it float.

Catch the crab on the big boat

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Next, leave it there for 20 minutes and pull it right away after finding the blue crabs caught.


To discover their hot spot, you need to find at many places. You should pay attention to the place where there are many commercial crabbers. The reason is that there could be a high population of crabs.

Remember the faster you approach and pull, the higher chance the crabs are stuck in your trap.

On the small boat

In case you have a small boat, you are fine with a crabbing as long as you stay in the protected sound and the bay.

On the small boat

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You should wake up in the early morning to increase a chance of catching blue crabs.

Make sure you check the local time that allows you to drop the pot.

Recreational or non-commercial crabbing

Crabbing with a line, bait, and net

If you do not have a boat, don’ worry as you can go to public piers or beaches to catch blue crabs. You need to carry traps, baits, a bucket and ruler in case you check for a legal size of caught crabs. In addition, you can catch one or two crabs at a time with this method.

Crabbing with a line, bait, and net

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A dip net would be effective for this method. Firstly, you find shallow water places (piers, docks etc.) where blue crabs are likely to be around. The water depth often is often less than 5 feet.

Then, tie a chicken neck to the string end and slowly drop it to the bay floor. After waiting, you can notice the finds moving when you feel the tension in the line which is pulled down 12 inches under water.

Now, bring it up gently and grab the net. Next, snag the crab off the bait by using a net on a pole. Finally, drop the crabs into your bucket by slightly scooping under them.

Crabbing with a square trap

When it comes down a blue crab trapping, you always need to attach a chicken neck to the string as a bait. Next, tie a trap at the dock or buoy and leave it floating for hours or two days.

Crabbing with a square trap

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As for this trap’s construction, once the blue crabs walk in, they could not find a way out. Until then, your boat can return and get the achievement. After pulling the trap out of the water, open and shake the trap quickly.


Take care of hygiene issue after handling bait of raw meat as these ingesting bacteria would easily cause illness.

Final words

You should find a dock, a pier or shallow water where the blue crap often gathers. Then, you prepare a dip net, bait and a line for a simple method. In case you catch a crab on a boat, you will need a crab pot. Make sure you check the local state regulation in term of crab’s characteristic and a crabbing time. That’s all about how to catch blue crabs efficiently with two easy-to-learn methods and four needed preparations. Wish you enjoy your crabbing and have a tasty meal with crab meat!