PACIFIC NORTHWEST — Commercial Dungeness crab fishermen in the Pacific Northwest had a relatively strong 2019-20 season, catching a combined 35 million pounds in Oregon and Washington, approximately 15% more than 2018-19.
Oregon commercial Dungeness crab fishermen caught 19,980,932 pounds during the 2019-2020 season with an ex-vessel value of $72.7 million.
The 2019-2020 catch was approximately 1.3 million pounds more than 2018-2019, according to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW).
The season average price was $3.64, the highest since 2014 ($4.12), according to ODFW.
Strong early season
January had the heaviest landings, accounting for 12,970,306, or 64% of the season total. The January haul of 12.9 million pounds was the second-highest single month since February 2017-2018, when 13.8 million pounds were brought in.
Astoria and Seaside had their highest landings in January, when 2.8 million pounds were caught, accounting for approximately 21% of the catch statewide. Newport, Waldport and Depoe Bay had the highest January landings among all Oregon ports with a combined total of 6.1 million pounds, nearly 50% of landings for the heaviest month that tallied 12.9 million pounds across Oregon docks.
Washington commercial Dungeness crab fishermen caught approximately 15.7 million pounds during the 2019-2020 season, the best season total since 2016-2017 (16.4 million) and exceeding seven out of the past eight years, according to figures from Pacific Fisheries Information Network (PACFIN).
In 2019-2020 commercial crabbers delivered nearly six million more pounds of crab in Washington — a roughly 25% increase — compared to 2018-2019.
The majority was delivered to Washington Coastal Ports (CWA), nearly 8 million pounds, approximately 50% of the overall catch. North Puget Sound Ports (NPS) accounted for 3.8 million, with a $4.78 average price, approximately 24% of overall catch. Washington Columbia River Ports (CLW) had 2.4 million pounds with an average price of $3.51, accounting for 15% of the overall catch. Other or unknown Washington Ports (WA5) had 710,000 pounds, about 4% of the overall catch, with a $4.69 average.