21 Oct 2010

Fishermen allowed to catch lucrative deepwater crabs

6:33 pm on 21 October 2010

Lucrative deepwater crabs are to be hunted by fishermen in some of New Zealand's deadliest waters.

A special research permit of almost four years has been granted by the Minister of Fisheries this week.

Fishermen consider these crabs the world's deadliest catch because of the inherent risks involved in hunting them in their deep and rough water environment.

Deepwater King Crabs and Red Crabs are known to grow to up to 1.2 metres in length.

The crabs would be destined for Europe, Asia and the United States and on the live export market and are as valuable as crayfish.

Tony Craig, a spokesperson for Crabco New Zealand Limited which will be fishing for the crabs, says there are no boats or crews in this country capable of fishing for these species.

Mr Craig says they will need to be brought here, with the boats costing up to $6.5 million each.