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Stone Crab Season Wraps Up

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(Source: CBS4 / Al Sunshine)

(Source: CBS4 / Al Sunshine)

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KEY WEST (CBSMiami/AP) – Stone crab harvesting season has come to an end and it will be one for the books but not in a good way.

Commercial fishermen in the Florida Keys said they have a disastrous harvest this year.

Last year, they got around $18 a pound for jumbo claws, $12 a pound for large claws and $7 or $8 for medium claws.

Commercial fisherman George Niles said those prices went up as much as $6 a pound this year, but production was so poor that the season wasn’t lucrative.

A Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission biologist says red tides and a fatal parasite plagued stone crabs this year.

This season’s harvest may total about 2 million pounds. A good season should yield about 3 million pounds.

The next season begins October 15th.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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