California extends commercial rock crab season

California’s commercial rock crab season was extended Wednesday¬†to include the entire coastal area from Pillar Point Harbor in San Mateo County all the way to the Mexican border, according to state Department of Fish and Wildlife officials.

Previously, it was open from about the Pillar Point lighthouse to the Mexican border, a difference of roughly 25 miles, according to Fish and Wildlife spokeswoman Jordan Traverso.

The fishery north of Pillar Point remains closed due to high levels of domoic acid found in the crustaceans. Domoic acid is a neurotoxin that can cause illness and, in some cases, fatalities in humans.

The recreational rock crab fishery is open for the entire state, with a warning from state officials that people should avoid eating the viscera of crabs caught north of Pillar Point.

The state’s commercial Dungeness crab season was partially stalled for a while this year due to similar concerns but is now open to Shelter Cove in Humboldt County.