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Treacodactyl

Spider crab, spider crab...

... does whatever a spider can ...

Found this perky little critter the other day which is probably the largest crab I've found on the seashore.


Although he (she?) was a bit small for eating, so was carefully returned to a safer place, apparently it's not unheard of to find edible sized spider crabs at low tide at this time of year. Has anyone managed this and, if so, are they worth eating? This one was quite high up the beach so with the coming low tides there's hope of finding others.
Northern Boy

Whoo-hoo!

It's a bit dinky tho' that one, not really worth eating. The minimum landing size is 12cm, tho' might vary depending where you are.

I was out netting them off the kayak last week (while Moniar and co were fishing for Tope)

I did alright! - http://t.co/UoUL2uj4
Nicky Colour it green

I've only ever had spider crab that was picked up by divers or in pots - but they are good eating, yes. - and as you say, much bigger.
vegplot

Used to see loads of the while divining around Anglesey. Some were scarily large.
Northern Boy

This is the biggest one I've ever caught, tho there are way bigger ones out there. 5lbs (2.3kg).

It was one of the most delicious things I have ever eaten, tho there does seem to be a lot of variability between crabs.



Moniar

Northern Boy

I fancy a go for them spider crabs - plenty of them around Cardigan Bay - is there a special type of net you use for them? I have got a couple of the cheap prawn pots which have had eater crabs in them along with a 7 lb bull huss on one occasion. I intend trying a bit harder for the lobster and crab this summer off the kayak whilst I spin for bass.
Treacodactyl

It's a bit dinky tho' that one, not really worth eating. The minimum landing size is 12cm, tho' might vary depending where you are.


It certainly looked a bit small although it was around 10+ so not far off (I think it's 12cm female, 13cm male).

So, everyone thinks they're tasty. How does everyone kill them? Pop in the freezer for a couple of hours, spike behind the eyes, into cool water and bring to boil, straight into boiling water or some other method.
Nick

Am I right that it's only the legs you eat on a spider crab?

Remember seeing hundreds landed for export in Cornwall and Wales as a kid. Haven't seen one for years.
Jamanda

Am I right that it's only the legs you eat on a spider crab?

Remember seeing hundreds landed for export in Cornwall and Wales as a kid. Haven't seen one for years.


No! There's loads of lovely brown meat in the shell. There's not much in the legs.
Northern Boy

Northern Boy

I fancy a go for them spider crabs - plenty of them around Cardigan Bay - is there a special type of net you use for them? I have got a couple of the cheap prawn pots which have had eater crabs in them along with a 7 lb bull huss on one occasion. I intend trying a bit harder for the lobster and crab this summer off the kayak whilst I spin for bass.

I use hoop nets which I bought with me when I moved back from the US. I think here in the UK we have 'drop nets' which are similar, but mine have a much bigger mesh size which lets the dinks out. They don't get trapped until you lift the nets tho, so you have to lift them every 20-60 mins to see what's happening. Tbh that's half the fun for me, seeing the shapes forming as I lift the net from the gloom.

I did put out a string (well, two) of those collapsible prawn pots when we were out last week and when I lifted them (after 5h) they were full of spider crabs, but all bar one were too small. There were a couple of monsters clinging to the outside as I lifted them but they dropped off as I lifted them to the surface. I think they're best left overnight to get the lobsters and brown crabs.
Northern Boy

Am I right that it's only the legs you eat on a spider crab?

Remember seeing hundreds landed for export in Cornwall and Wales as a kid. Haven't seen one for years.

No! There's loads of lovely brown meat in the shell. There's not much in the legs.

My god yes, the brown 'meat' is amazing, basically Crab Butter. I always find that I get a decent amount of white meat from inside the shells as well.
fungi2bwith

When fishing off-shore of Folkstone some years ago I hooked a dead weight, which the skipper was convinced was a cod, I was certain it wasn't a fish but was pleasantly suprised when the biggest spider crab I have ever seen surfaced. It weighed almost 6lb. You try finding a pot to boil that in! It tasted great. Some fresh with mayonaise while still warm, some of the brown meat to make a pasta source the next day and lots of crab cakes for the freezer. better than a cod any day.

Garry
dpack

ace tasty critters

i have used a X frame of two sticks with sliding nooses and bait ,drop in ,wait for twitching ,pull ,very effective ,

good shore spots are off rocks into deep water with a sandy bed or forage at very low tide ,

not as pinchy as lobsters or big edible crabs but they can nip a bit and biguns are quite strong
Moniar

Cheers - will see what is available locally - there is a firm in Aberystwyth making pots so I will see what they have to offer.

Northern Boy

I fancy a go for them spider crabs - plenty of them around Cardigan Bay - is there a special type of net you use for them? I have got a couple of the cheap prawn pots which have had eater crabs in them along with a 7 lb bull huss on one occasion. I intend trying a bit harder for the lobster and crab this summer off the kayak whilst I spin for bass.

I use hoop nets which I bought with me when I moved back from the US. I think here in the UK we have 'drop nets' which are similar, but mine have a much bigger mesh size which lets the dinks out. They don't get trapped until you lift the nets tho, so you have to lift them every 20-60 mins to see what's happening. Tbh that's half the fun for me, seeing the shapes forming as I lift the net from the gloom.

I did put out a string (well, two) of those collapsible prawn pots when we were out last week and when I lifted them (after 5h) they were full of spider crabs, but all bar one were too small. There were a couple of monsters clinging to the outside as I lifted them but they dropped off as I lifted them to the surface. I think they're best left overnight to get the lobsters and brown crabs. sean

Pasta with crab sauce for tea. And the debris has gone in the freezer to become a bisque at some point.
I'd like to have a heroic fishing anecdote but Jamanda just bought the crab at the fishmonger in Barnstaple this morning.
Northern Boy

Pasta with crab sauce for tea. And the debris has gone in the freezer to become a bisque at some point.
I'd like to have a heroic fishing anecdote but Jamanda just bought the crab at the fishmonger in Barnstaple this morning.

You could just make one up. Would seem appropriate for a fishing anecdote.
Treacodactyl

There were quite a few pieces of spider crabs on the beach this morning, and a rather lively velvet swimmer that seemed to want me for dinner.

I did manage to catch a fish in the sea with my bare hands though, put him back as he was only an inch or two long. Laughing
Northern Boy

There were quite a few pieces of spider crabs on the beach this morning, and a rather lively velvet swimmer that seemed to want me for dinner.

I did manage to catch a fish in the sea with my bare hands though, put him back as he was only an inch or two long. Laughing

How are you getting on with the shrimp net? We bagged hundreds last month, but were really disappointed with the taste.
sean

I think that prawns are more worth the effort than shrimps. IMHO.

I'm going to change my spider crab story and claim that Jamanda won it in a knife fight. Hah, beat that with your nets and kayaks.
Treacodactyl

There were quite a few pieces of spider crabs on the beach this morning, and a rather lively velvet swimmer that seemed to want me for dinner.

I did manage to catch a fish in the sea with my bare hands though, put him back as he was only an inch or two long. Laughing

How are you getting on with the shrimp net? We bagged hundreds last month, but were really disappointed with the taste.

I've not used it since I last mentioned, the weather's been a bit too 'orrible to get out much and I've been rod fishing. I caught a mighty 8 inch bass the other day, swiftly returned of course.

Knife wielding teachers are always a danger down here though.
Jamanda

Shocked Northern Boy

I think that prawns are more worth the effort than shrimps. IMHO.

I'm going to change my spider crab story and claim that Jamanda won it in a knife fight. Hah, beat that with your nets and kayaks.

My kayak is in fact the hollowed out skin of a Great White Shark that I killed with my bare hands (knives are for wimps). I wove the blood vessels of the shark into a net which I then used to catch the crabs. Using the sharks brain as bait.
Jamanda

Well how ever it was procured the spidercrab pasta sauce was very good - and we discovered that this year's batch of chillies are rather good and that's with them them still green!
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