Blue Crabs

Anyone ever catch Blue crabs and try to fatten “enlarge” and purge them of sand? Kind of like a cattle feedlot.

I am catching them and keeping them just under the surface at the bottom of 5 gallon buckets. I am wondering if I can grow them to 10 inchers free from mud and sand. I am worried of the canal temps in Summer though as 91 is supposedly fatal and I imagine the burrow in the mud and muck to stay cool buut I am trying to avoid the mud and sandy flavor and bits. There will be pictures if it ever works. I wonder how long with good meals it will take to get them to 10 inches if even possible in S Florida.

My parents you to accumulate them in a floating pen and feed them lots of fish scraps. We never tried to grow them through a molt. If you do, you have to separate them as busters because the other crabs will eat them while their in the soft shell state (I would eat them then too). Even if you don’t keep them through the molt, they will get heavy with a steady diet in a pen.


Chuck i have not been able to keep them together because they eat each other I tried just a few in a big trap and no luck so now I am using home depot buckets 1 per bucket. bucket only costs $4 for bucket and lid. I let you all know how it works out.

Fixing the iguana problem around here though :slight_smile: Great bait and food source :slight_smile:

You must have yankee blood in you.
Just throw them in boiling water and eat.

I want them Big and Fat like the 10 inchers I have seen. they are a little muddy and gritty when comming from the dania cut off canal. Unfortunately Yanke Blood but Southern by Birth. I wish I could go make a great living somewhere where the average temp is in the 70’s and out in Nature with hunting and fishing and the ability to shoot on my old property like it was here when I was young. All but the heat that has always sucked down here. Unless you are a slob who enjoys sweating their a-s off. There is only one activity that I do not mind sweating during but if the air is cold enough you do not have to worry about that either. The worst wat to start my day in my opinion is to open the door step out and be blind because you glasses immediately fog up from the wall of water in the air. I friggen hate it.

You will never grow them that big in captivity.
I just get my crab net and scoop the sob’s up and get the water boiling with the crab boil and eat.
If you have them in a cage just throw a dead fish in the …They will eat.
They have to molt /shed I believe during the full moon to grow.
Shedder are the best to eat.

I have heard and have never had a soft shelled fried crab. you eat the whole thing shell and all. I imagine they remove the gills and crap first though? right? There is a place called Smoked till you choke BBQ joint where fried softshell crabs are their speciality I am going to have to hit if for lunch some day :). I love Snow or Queen grab if I have my choice.

Stone crabs are in now yum.

Have they been smokin’ weed?


Too expensive for my broke a-s right now :frowning: But I do like Florida ones a lot. I do not really like the foreign ones you get on cruise ships and cheap a-s buffets :slight_smile:

Good thing is is they are sustainable. Dave do you put out any post? You look like a guy that spends some time on the water to me. Especially since where you live.

I “hear” they are much better when the eater smokes the week :slight_smile: Then things get really expensive.

Way back in the day, I used to go crabbing at the Davie Blvd. bridge, and a few “secret spots” with chicken necks, string and a net. I would fill a five-gallon bucket each time.

They would average 8-10 inches with many getting much bigger than that.

I would probably be leery of the ones in the water these days…

My wife loves them…but…because we had crabs virtually every other day when I was growing up, I no longer have the desire for them. :frowning:

Lobster and stone crabs…on the other hand… :smiley:

Your pictures looked great. The water in the Dania cut off are pretty nice as far as I am concerned. In my area most water is tidal and most of the crap flows out the new river :slight_smile: fpr me any how. Those you talked about are pushing world record size and I think if I can keep them alive in a 5 gallon bucket till they get that size I’ll have some damn good eating. Previous experience with live when cooked local Blues have been a little muddy and gritty that is why I want to fatten them so there is more meat per shell ratio and keeping up higher in the water colum will keep them from getting muddy. I only worry about them staying alive in the Summer due to heat. I have lost about 3 so far but I do not think I feed them enough or the food went threw the holes I have in the current buckets. I am just doing it for fun as I am helping the ecology buy reducing Iguanas “my bait” and helping restore native animals like the Miami Blue butterfly which are getting extremely rare because the darn lizards are eating their food and egg laying plant. God only knows how many other plant specific animals they are hurting by devouring everything in their path. I am going to eat a iguana next time I get a big one as my new renter neighbor has experience eating them and reallyy likes the tail which when I cut up for bait or crab food sure looks good and white to me. Kind of stringy though like a Golden crab .

Anyone have a method for skinning them and or preparing the eggs?

The hide is super tough and apparently worth money but I am not going to take the time to do that. People around the world seem to mainly scortch and scrape them nbut that sounds nasty and like it would stink to me. I am hoping I can skin them like a frog if we have any frog hunters out there. cut around under the arms of a frog and place his head on a nail sticking out of a board “8D” and grab his skin with tie wire cutter pliers or catfish skinners and pull their pants off. Hoping something similar would work with the lizards.

ANYONE OUT THERE WITH CLEANING FLORIDA IGUANAS PLEASE give me any advice and or tips you have because the meat looks good and the legs may just cook up like wing flats :slight_smile:

I post good picts if I get any. Umerax 22 cal r rifle is a damn fine method of harvesting if you can hit the head. I ordered mine without a scope and can normally get them up to 50 ish feet with open sights. ONLY TAKE HEAD SHOTS.


This is what we are dealing with here:

They appear to be territorial as they have taken up residence on our roof as well as the neighbors!

I have not seen them yet :frowning:


As of yesterday afternoon I had 7 big ones in a trap and 6 in buckets. I killed an iguana and threw it in the trap so they would not cannibalize each other. This just may be the weekend i eat them. I have been waiting on buying more buckets to see if the heat of the tidal “shallow twice a day” waters would kill them. apparently if you keep them feed they will live :slight_smile: They sure seem to like old sausages as bait. must be all the fat leading them to the trap? Now if they are good and the wife likes them also I may buy 6 or more new buckets. Crabs are something you want to eat with others for some reason? At least I am not wasting leftover food anymore. I’ll let you all know how they are.

I had crabs once when I was young. I don’t think they were blue, and I certainly never considered feeding them.

You were feeding them :frowning: