Favorite crab bait

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TeachingTitusToFish
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Favorite crab bait

Post by TeachingTitusToFish » Fri Jun 10, 2016 1:36 pm

All right guys I've heard:
chicken
turkey
fish carcasses (salmon, rockfish, etc)
stocker trout
shad
smelt
herring
crushed up clams/mussels
mink
cat food
actual crab bait nugget biscuit things
even asked a guy once what he was using because he was killing it off the dock while others weren't... pepperoni pizza. That's right, pepperoni pizza.

So what's your favorite bait? Do you guys add extra scent? Normally we usually just use chicken and salmon carcasses, but we want test some things out this year. Will be using a mixture of smelt, razors clams I got from someone that didn't want them (blasphemy!). Anyone ever try bacon/bacon grease?

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DavidA
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by DavidA » Fri Jun 10, 2016 1:43 pm

Frozen chicken quarters from Walmart. Red bag: $7.90 per 10 lbs.
There may be better, but for the cost and convenience - if I don't get my limit, it's because my pots have been picked. I have considered bacon grease before, so please let me know what you think. Good luck.

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Larry3215
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by Larry3215 » Fri Jun 10, 2016 1:44 pm

We have had the best luck with chicken parts and some added pellets and scent. Havent tried most of those other options though. Of the ones we did try, cat food and hundred year old freezer burned salmon were the worst.

On the other hand, some years - like last year - nothing worked all that well by the time we got out and in the places we tried. Back in the good old days, almost anything got you a full pot :) Its still fishing, so there is always a bit of luck and a lot of effort and knowing your spots.

Onmygame
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by Onmygame » Fri Jun 10, 2016 2:36 pm

I remember one year back in the late '80s - where crabbing in the Westport boat basin required fish for bait in order to be successful - salmon heads, rockfish carcasses, herring, tuna, etc, and chicken yielded nothing but empty pots.

Same week in Mukilteo - if you didn't have fresh chicken, no crab for you!

So it depends on the area as to the BEST bait. You can check with those fishing, or figure it out by trial and error if you have the time.

I myself prefer herring, anchovies, anything oily and fresh.

Commercial crabbers use razor clam necks in hard plastic bait boxes to protect the bait. This is offshore - where razors are a natural food source for crab.

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Duwamish Amish
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by Duwamish Amish » Fri Jun 10, 2016 5:37 pm

Crushed whole Horse Clams or Geoduck guts in a bait cage with Salmon heads or Chicken legs as hanging bait. Always seems to out fish those around me, especially from the piers.
Amen.

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Sideburns
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by Sideburns » Fri Jun 10, 2016 5:51 pm

I cleaned out my freezer last time I went. I had some traps with just chicken, some with fish, but the traps that were loaded with big male dungeness were baited with a sampler platter of perch, trout, salmon, chicken and squid.

The traps with only fish and the traps with only chicken caught less than half the amount.

This was in hood canal earlier this year.
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G-Man
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by G-Man » Sat Jun 11, 2016 11:15 am

I prefer to use fish, as I don't have to go out and buy it. Spiny ray carcasses, trout/salmon carcasses, pike minnow, suckers, sandabs, etc. If and when the Puget Sound rivers open for catch and release trout fishing, remember most all allow retention of non trout/salmon species. A great way to put your by-catch to use! Also, if you don't have some type of bait hanging open in your trap, you aren't crabbing with maximum effort!

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Bodofish
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by Bodofish » Mon Jun 13, 2016 11:59 am

Duwamish Amish wrote:Crushed whole Horse Clams or Geoduck guts in a bait cage with Salmon heads or Chicken legs as hanging bait. Always seems to out fish those around me, especially from the piers.
This is by far the best. It's the crabs natural diet I catch more by far with clams than chicken ever does.
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Bodofish
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by Bodofish » Mon Jun 13, 2016 12:03 pm

Duwamish Amish wrote:Crushed whole Horse Clams or Geoduck guts in a bait cage with Salmon heads or Chicken legs as hanging bait. Always seems to out fish those around me, especially from the piers.
This is by far the best. It's the crabs natural diet I catch more by far with clams than chicken ever does.
Build a man a fire and he's warm for the night. Light a man on fire and he's warm the rest of his life!

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GoingtoFish
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by GoingtoFish » Mon Jun 13, 2016 12:39 pm

Last year we did a little test. We had 6 pots out. Two with wet cat food, two with fish bits/parts and two with chicken parts.
We dropped all the pots in the same general area. Got ZERO crabs in the cat food and fish parts pots. But got 3 limits in the two with chicken parts, with one 2 hour soak.

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Bodofish
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by Bodofish » Mon Jun 13, 2016 1:34 pm

GoingtoFish wrote:Last year we did a little test. We had 6 pots out. Two with wet cat food, two with fish bits/parts and two with chicken parts.
We dropped all the pots in the same general area. Got ZERO crabs in the cat food and fish parts pots. But got 3 limits in the two with chicken parts, with one 2 hour soak.
You better go dig some clams if you want to beat those chicken parts. Chicken parts are good but the best is clams, only use clams you wouldn't want to eat, I use the cockle shells and horsey's, both are easy to dig. Having a house on the beach helps, I set the pots so they go through a tide change and just relax on the beach the rest of the time. None of that bobbing around for hours and I can honestly say I haven't kept a crab under 6 3/4 for years, most are over 7".
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SalmonAddict
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by SalmonAddict » Mon Jun 13, 2016 8:38 pm

Flounders...hands down...

gpacho
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by gpacho » Mon Jun 20, 2016 7:32 am

Squid that I caught last winter with a little bit of Patuzke's crab fuel.

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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by Onmygame » Mon Jun 20, 2016 7:39 am

While I had posted earlier in the thread about what I know to be good bait - it didn't occur to me to list what not to use.

With certainty - unless you completely skin the meat first - refrain from using octopus.

Crab's natural predator, and effectively - crab repellent.

onmygame

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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by riverhunter » Tue Jun 21, 2016 10:41 am

Leftover carcasses. Enough said no need to buy, just catch. Any species works but the more oily the fish the better. The reason chicken works good is because of the oils the chicken releases but in my experience oily fish has done better than chicken, even stocker trout have outfished chicken. If no fish in hand then chicken is a good alternative but only fresh chicken. Not anything rotten as that will actually deter crabs. That old myth of rotting parts is so far from the truth plus who wants to eat a crab that just ate rotten chicken parts! 😖

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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by c_saeteurn » Sun Jul 03, 2016 5:42 am

Seafood carcasses or waste

dogslife4me2003
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by dogslife4me2003 » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:08 pm

I use a combination of whole chicken wings (or really, whatever is cheapest or on sale and not from the frozen food section seems to work, although I have used the frozen foods section chicken) and a can of Friskies whitefish and tuna. I out-crab my friends every time with this combo. A pack of 6-8 chicken wings is $3.00 or so, two or three cans of cat food at $.049 and for around $5 a weekend, I have at least three times that worth in crab.

I have tried other combos, including horse clams, but this one is the quickest for me, as it is on the way to where I launch my canoe (you read that correctly).

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Sideburns
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by Sideburns » Tue Oct 18, 2016 2:15 pm

dogslife4me2003 wrote:I use a combination of whole chicken wings (or really, whatever is cheapest or on sale and not from the frozen food section seems to work, although I have used the frozen foods section chicken) and a can of Friskies whitefish and tuna. I out-crab my friends every time with this combo. A pack of 6-8 chicken wings is $3.00 or so, two or three cans of cat food at $.049 and for around $5 a weekend, I have at least three times that worth in crab.

I have tried other combos, including horse clams, but this one is the quickest for me, as it is on the way to where I launch my canoe (you read that correctly).
I agree that a combination of baits seems to be the ticket...
Doesn't it seem reasonable that a bunch of freezer burnt chicken slathered in tuna oil, krill scent, etc... would wreak havoc?

Have any of you tried fishing oriented scents for crab?
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TeachingTitusToFish
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by TeachingTitusToFish » Wed Oct 19, 2016 11:22 am

We went out a couple weeks ago in Hood Canal and used everything we had left over in the freezer. Razor clams, freezer burnt rock fish surf perch greenling and bull heads, fresh chicken, chicken that had been in the fridge a week and starting to go, pink carcasses from last year, week old coho carcasses, and some pautzke's crab and shrimp fuel in the chicken diaper thing. We had 5 pots. Each pot had chicken in it, but we separated the others 1 had the clams, 2 had the freezer burnt rockfish, surf perch, greenling, and bullhead, 3 had the salmon, 4 had the stinky chicken, and 5 had the salmon carcasses. Surprisingly the pot with the stinky chicken produced the most, the next was the clams, and the others were all about the same. Didn't quite limit on dungies, but got tons of reds. Ended up keeping the ones that were bigger than 6.5", one was even 8", it was huge, giant compared next to the 7" dungies.

I attached my gopro to one of the pots and will upload the video when I have time to edit it down. It's pretty cool.
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3footvis
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Re: Favorite crab bait

Post by 3footvis » Wed Oct 19, 2016 7:35 pm

Fried chicken works great too if you can get the unsold stuff at thr deli at the end of the day for cheap. Milks good in the water from all the grease & usually have some leftover for lunch ;)

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