Bearded seal harvested with a belly full of snow crab in Green Bay


Published on March 15, 2017

Danny Dicks of Baie Verte harvested a bearded seal recently that had 181 identifiable female and two male crabs in its stomach.

©Photo submitted by Deon Dicks

Snow crab are commonly found in depths of water up to 700 feet, but that’s not too deep for a hungry bearded seal.

Baie Verte native Danny Dicks recently harvested a bearded seal (square flipper seal) with 181 identifiable female and two male crabs in its stomach.

The seal weighed between 200-300 pounds and measured approximately seven feet long.

The Pilot spoke with Danny’s brother, Deon about the seal and what it was eating.

“Bearded seals are not as common as the harp seals that are usually harvested,” Deon said. “They are much larger and can dive down in the deep water for crab and I’ve even seen them with rocks in their bellies.”

This isn’t the first time the Dicks brothers have harvested bearded seals filled with snow crab. About two years ago, one was taken with 85 crab inside, but he’s never seen this many.

“The females are needed to produce,” Deon said. “They (seals) are destroying the crab stocks.”

 

TC Media will be following up on this story and the impact of seals on the crab fishery.

 

christy.janes@pilotnl.ca

 

A Facebook post by Richard Gillett indicating the potential for impacts on the crab fishery by just a single seal eating multiple crab.

©Facebook photo