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Hey all,

After catching a few short flounders Saturday, on a whim I decided to drop some green crab bait for tog and I caught my first tog ever...
Pulled him out of 30 feet water... Lot of fun...

Question...

I have been cutting the crab into 4 pieces, but it's tough. I can easily split it into 2, right up the middle... but a lot of times, I go to split it again and I crush the crab real bad.

Then I pull the legs off and put the hook through the joints...

But I feel that by cutting the crab into quarters, I'm mushing it up. Anyone use half a crab? Would that be too big?

Is there a better way to do this?

[ 05-07-2006, 11:37 PM: Message edited by: Sturgeon General ]
 

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Use scissors to cut off the legs and cut the body, Hook the crab through the claw joint and you'll have a little bit more time while he chews to swing. Sometimes you may want to leave the legs on if they don't bite right away. I always use the half.

[ 05-07-2006, 11:46 PM: Message edited by: Vitalsigns ]
 

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MEET THE GREEN CRAB

Common Name
Green Crab (Carcinus Maenus) and Shore crab

The Green Crab made its journey from the European Atlantic coast to the US eastern Coast in the early 1800?s with the first North American record in 1817. Although not certain, it is most probable that Green Crabs reached our eastern shores via ships. The cold temperate Atlantic coast with its booming shellfish and snail populations was ideal for Green Crabs to flourish. The Green Crab has had successful invasions throughout the east coast, from North Carolina north to Nova Scotia.

Lets talk about there colors there seem to be a few.
The most popular is the orange guys; they are usually harder and seem to work well. I think this is because they stay on the hook better and are easer for the tog to see. Then you have the yellowish, light green and whitish, some are softer and some are harder than the others. Males have a triangle shape on their bellies and the females have a more rounded shape on their belly.

Now lets talk about catching them.
My best friend and I did a lot of searching for the best places to catch them. We found that locations with more currants did better. We caught them most of the year from OC to CM. They seem to start getting sluggish when the temps get in the 30?s and in the low 30?s they stop feeding. We used a few different types of traps to catch them. One was just and old fashioned type you use for blue claws. We modified it by putting smaller mesh around the bottom, so the smaller crabs did not get out. We also made our own traps. We use the green-coated chicken wire you get from Lowes and regular chicken wire. The uncoated wire traps did not last to long. We made two different types, one was a 2?x 2? square with a pallor and the other was half the size with no pallor. For the shoots and bait compartment we used a smaller square mesh. We use the small traps if we were hanging around and crabbing and the larger ones we left in over night to empty the next day for fishing. We also made holding pens to keep at the dock. They were made out of ½? square mesh also green coated and measured 2?x2?x12? high. We could keep around a bushel and a half in it with out any problems. For bait it did not seem to matter with the green crabs. We used everything from Tog carcasses to freezer burnt brown trout.

Using Green Crabs For Black Fish
When I am using green crabs I like to use the lighter orange crabs. I try and use hole small ones and just crack the shell with my sinker. If they are larger I will cut them in half. Do not forget to try different presentations. I have gone with out a bight on a whole small crab, change to a small cut piece and bam fish on. Try cutting them in half, with and with out legs or cutting them even smaller. Try hole crabs with the shell ripped off with and without legs whatever works.
 

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Good info Stalker. I never knew they were any color than green.
 

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I (almost) never go with less than half a green crab, and will use the small ones whole. I prefer to fish them "legs on" unless the current is real strong and they are spinning too much. If you go legs off, cut them, don't pull them. You want to keep the knuckle where the leg meets the body intact. Put the hook in this joint and out the bottom of the crab in the second or third leg. Bait tends to hold pretty well this way.

Nice writeup stalker
 

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Good idea about using the scissors. I was having the same problem with pulling the legs off. Also, when presenting the bait, you want to keep it as still as possible. No jigging the bait up and down.
 

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What are the similiar looking crabs that run around on the mud at the edge of the water and drop into holes. Are they green crabs or a relative? And if not are they any good for bait?
The dock I keep my minnow traps at have thousands of them running around.
Barrell
 

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Fiddlers work great,but you have to be prepared to swing fast.A tog can wipe you out real fast with a fiddler.Like the other posts stated,vary your servings.Legs on/off/shell on/off.I was out Friday and they didn't want the legs on where I fished.
 

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Originally posted by Hardtop:
Good info Stalker. I never knew they were any color than green.
I am talking about the under side of the crab
 

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Thanks for the compliments guy's

Don't forget about fishing for tog along deep cut sod banks close to the inlets and bridge pilings. Area's like this are a good choice when you can not get out front or around the jetties do to the conditions.
 

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Any time, I generally just saute the fillets with garlic , onion, and butter. Sometimes I add toasted pine nuts and capers. I just caught my first tog from my own boat last year on a wreck and am trying to get the sod bank thing down. Also you may want to do a BB search there are volumes on tthis subject. I also read the articles on the Karen Ann's site and they were very helpful. I really want to get on an open boat trip with him someday. Not to knock any of the other Captains on here but he's in my area.
 

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I use the fiddler crabs when fishing the gettys. The tog love them but you have to be quick on the hook. Best part about fiddlers is that the ycost nothing.
 

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Check out the Adam Bomb for a good Tog trip. He usually does very well. I did an open boat trip last year with Adam and we limited out at 48 Tog for 6 people. Some up to 11 lbs. You will learn some good techniques, like many described above and then some.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Hey, do you take the top shell off the crab?

NM.. I reread Bay Stalker's post...

great info..thx

[ 05-10-2006, 11:30 PM: Message edited by: Sturgeon General ]
 

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I limited out with 2 other guys at the Coast guard Jetty from a boat this past sunday...it took me longer to anchor than to catch them...biggest one one was 10+...most over 5lbs...I usually use 1/2 crab ...also vary leg on/leg off..it seems I get better hooksets without legs but they also can swipe it easier...also they seem to go nuts over calicos when you can get them...

[ 05-10-2006, 10:39 PM: Message edited by: sledge ]
 
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