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soft craws

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Lewzer, Apr 14, 2004.

  1. Lewzer

    Lewzer Powderfinger

    See tpet's post about craws reminded me of a post I made a few months ago.
    Doesn't anyone know of a (the) technique to make the hard shelled crayfish we catch in local rivers shed their shell?
    I met an old man years ago fishing that had a bucket of soft shell crayfish and he said he knows a way to induce molting. Of course he wouldn't tell me how it's done.
    Soft craws are too expensive to buy for Erie fishing.

    eyestalk ablation???
  2. Lewzer

    Lewzer Powderfinger


  3. Do the softshells really make that much differance? I have used ones that I sein up that have hard shells and do good with them or just tear off the tail and just use that and do good.
  4. Lewzer

    Lewzer Powderfinger

    Someone recently posted about adding something to crayfish water to make them molt. I did a search and cannot find the thread.
    Anyone know where this thread is. I think they said add borax or something to the bucket you keep the crayfish in and they will shed their shell within a couple of days.
  5. katfish

    katfish Cats are where it's at!


    I personally don't think soft craws make that much difference to fish. They are used to eating crawdads the way they find them.


    With that said I will relate what I learned.

    People at Lake Erie were willing to pay a premium for soft craws. The majority of the crawdads we seigned had hard shells. Rather than throw them back we made an aerated pond to keep them till their natural growth caused them to molt. We would pick out the soft ones and sell them as they molted.

    I found that by adding a cup of salt to a wading pool of water that the crawdads would shed in 3 or 4 days. I later found that adding epson salts would make them shed in 1 or 2 days. When you have a lot of crawdads that shed at one time you better separate them before they kill each other.

    There are over 500 different species of crawfish in North America alone ;)
  6. So about how much water per cup of epson salts ? I see it said a wading pool so I guess what I'm asking is what size wading pool is it for the one cup of salt ?
    I'm thinking of trying this and I don't want to over salt the water and kill the crawdads.
  7. my family is cajun. we eat the crawfish ourselves.
  8. Lewzer

    Lewzer Powderfinger

    Epson salts. That's what I was looking for.

    Thanks Katfish.
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