Dungeness crab season delayed for third time

Dungeness crab are shown for sale in a tank at the Alioto-Lazio Fish Market at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco, Monday, Aug. 10, 2012.

December 23, 2012 4:48:35 PM PST
The commercial season for Dungeness crab in Northern California has been delayed a third time, according to the California Department of Fish and Game.

The delay is caused by the quality tests revealing the crabs' body weight has less than 25 percent meat. The department said at least 25 percent meat of a crab's body weight is ideal.

Originally set for Dec. 1, the harvest was set to be ready by Dec. 31. However, after tests revealed the crabs were not ready, the season opening date was pushed back to Jan. 15.

It cannot be delayed beyond Jan. 15, according to the department.

Sonoma County south does not fall under the same restrictions; its season opened Nov. 15., allowing the crabs to have soft shells.