They consume clams, crustaceans, small species of fish, and just about anything that they can find that other predators have left behind. In California, the most abundant crab is the Dungeness crab, ... days that the crab undergoes a period of rapid growth before the new shell becomes calcified and fixes the size of the crab until the next molt. They also have smaller appendages that allow them to move the food into their mouth. Dungeness Crab Molting The data for this project were collected as part of a study of the adult female Dungeness crab. Crab reproduction. Mating and spawning of Dungeness crab occur at two different times. When small, a crab will seek shelter in the shells of small bivalves; as it grows larger, it move to eelgrass habitat where numerous varieties of prey can be found. These data are a mixture of some laboratory data and some capture–recapture data. Molted crab shells have all the external parts intact — including legs, antennae, eyes, and gill supports, which makes it difficult to tell whether or not you are looking at a dead crab or just a molt. The first consists of premolt and postmolt widths of the carapaces (shells) of 472 female Dun-geness crabs. A Dungeness crab is most vulnerable during the molt, when it sheds one shell and slowly grows another. “This industry-supported quality test determines if Dungeness crab have filled out in time following their molting period,” said CDFW Environmental Scientist Christy Juhasz. It molts a minimum of ten times before it is fully grown. “This industry-supported quality test determines if Dungeness crab have filled out in time following their molting period,” said CDFW Environmental Scientist Christy Juhasz. The data given for this investigation is pre-molt and post-molt size, increment, year, and source. With that said, fall is the annual low point season for Dungeness … one. According to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, during the recreational crab season (which typically begins on the first Saturday in November) you can catch and keep up to ten Dungeness crabs per day, as long as they measure at least 5 ¾ inches across.Most people use crab traps to bring in their haul. Molting involves shedding an old shell and casting a new. To find a crab’s age, the pre-molt and post-molt sizes are observed. Pre-molt is the size of the carapace before molting, post-molt Fall is when the larger crab's are molting and it takes longer for them to grow their shells. The Data. they molt regularly . Dungeness crab rest in a container as they are weighed during the opening day of commercial Dungeness crab season at Pillar Point Harbor in Half Moon Bay, Calif., on … Mating occurs in the late spring and summer months when females are molting and males are still in a hard shelled condition. 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