How and When Our Fresh Seafood Product are Harvested

April 26, 2018

Fresh Steamed Crabs

Chesapeake Bay Seafood Harvesting

We often get questions about how certain seafood products are harvested at J&W Seafood / Crabville

Blue Crabs - Our Crabs are caught in the Chesapeake Bay and the rivers that feed the Bay.   Crabs are caught using wire pots and are typically baited with bunker fish.   Watermen will usually set out a new line of pots in the morning and retrieve a line of pots that had been set a day prior.  The live crabs that are harvested from the pots are typically placed in bushel baskets and are graded by Jimmy's (Males) & Sooks (Females).  Depending on size there can be also some size grading.  

Clams - Our Clams are harvested using hand rakes or farm raised by our shellfish growers.  We  often harvest Littleneck Clams which is clams of a smaller size but are very tender. 

Soft Shell Crabs - The Blue Crab sheds at some point in the month of May.  Peeler crabs (crabs that are getting ready to shed) are brought in by crabbers where we place them in our tanks and monitor their shedding process.   If  weather conditions are optimal the bulk of crabs shed within 2 weeks, while there is some shedding throughout the summer.  We offer freshed dressed soft shell crabs when the shed starts in May and then it begins to trickle with a slight spike in August again.   In addition with a bulk of these crabs we are dressing out and wrapping individually and freezing.  This one of the only frozen product we have as its necessary because of the short span of the molting season for the soft shell crab.

Oysters - We harvest oysters off our private ground in the York River.  In addition in the fall and winter months we harvest oysters off Virginia certified public grounds.    Oysters are brought into our facility and graded for size. Large oysters are shucked for our Fresh Shucked Oyster products and normal size oysters are packed for our in shell product where its boxed in 100 Count boxes.  

Have more questions about our products feel free to reach out to us at rbarlow@jandwseafood.com

Thank you,

Crabville