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wlf web site is to time consuming to read up on crabing.

do i need a special license? is there a season? how many in a days limit? females released?

i am wanting to chunk some bait on a string off the side while fishing, and put some in the chest.
any info will be great.

thx WB
Beans, your saltwater license will do. You don't need a crab license unless you use traps. You can't keep females with eggs. No size limit. Limit 12 dozen.
You don't need any special permit or anything like that. I know the limit on the refuge is 12 dozen. I'm not sure if that is the same everywhere or not, but odds are you don't need more than 144 crabs. And you only have to throw back females if they have eggs on their underside. Good Luck
read the pamphlet
The others have provided basic info, but I find it troubling you don't want to read the WLF pamphlet. There is a lot of subtle information in there that will keep you from getting a ticket. There are area restrictions, time restrictions, and crab trap laws if you want to use one. The pamphlet is available at

Crabbing info is on page 28-29.
Hope this helps.
Remember if you go to a WMA, each one has different rules so check your laws before you go. The one I go to has a 12 dozen per BOAT limit. When I am not on that WMA, and just in regular state waters, the limit is 12 dozen per PERSON. A regular saltwater fishing license will suffice, unless you use traps. You can get a recreational trap license (good for up to 10 traps) for $15.00. Also, there are no size limits for recreational crabbing. Just like the guys said before, make sure you do not keep any females with the eggs on the underbelly. They will fine you for sure.
thanks guys, give me some of your tricks or set ups you use to catch'em. looking to put some in the box while waiting on ole bob's specs to turn on..., if me not wanting to read the pamphlet troubled you, well i do not know what to tell you... hope you did not loose sleep over it. the website you provided was good, and i thank you for that.
Get ya two metal rods, or two pieces of bamboo, run to walmart and getcha some jug fishin line or some strang, buy some chicken necks, or castnet some mullet, cut up mullet, attach mullet/chicken neck to string in 1 ft increments. Tie one end to one pole/rod/stick run 6ft to 10ft line tie to other stick,rod, pole. Check line at 20min, then every 10 to 15min afterwards. Pull string up slow with appropriate net underneath as u work the line to capture crab.

Or get strang, tie chicken leg to the end, throw chicken leg as far as u can, slowly pull string in, net crab.
you have to read the regulations
Glad to help. I had to scold you for your protection. There are too many nuances to fishing rules. If you crab without a fishing license...ticket. If you use crab traps without the appropriate crab trap license....ticket. Let's say you do have the trap license but don't label the float with your license number.....ticket. If you run the crab traps at night....ticket. Keep a crab with eggs....ticket. WMA's have different rules, as someone has noted. Then there are the pleasant surprises, like no size limit.

Then, there are the rules hidden elsewhere, like having to renew the license July 1 each year no matter when you bought the initial licenses. I could go on. Hopefully you get most of this info somewhere else, but often some nuance is missed. That's why you have to read the fineprint. Its a pain and I personally think we have given up too many freedoms for our regulations to be governed by micetype, but currently that's the way it is.

Last night I saw someone in a boat at night in a no-wake zone. He was going slow with lights. An officer boarded him anyway. Turns out he was running with headlights, not night lights. The whole thing was stupid. Obviously, the officer was bored and had an itch to scratch, and boating regulations said he broke the law. You have to know the nuances.
thanks for the info.....
now what is the best way to keep them till i get home?
in ice water?
just in an ice chest?
need to know for an overnight trip.....
thx....thats what i needed to know....

Recreational Crabbing
No, there are no license requirements for recreational crabbing with nets or lines unless you are in a WMA.

If you use traps you will need the following, basic, saltwater and gear licenses.

Yes, I agree it is important to read the regulations. If you did you would have discovered this info from the LDWF website. See last paragraph.

Size/Possession Limits

There is no minimum recreational size limit for blue crabs. The daily and possession limit is 12 dozen per person, daily and in possession.

There is no minimum recreational size limit for stone crabs or stone crab claws. Certain WMAs and state and federal refuges may have different possession limits. Consult local LDWF offices or Enforcement agents for specifics.

Any person using crab nets or crab lines for the purpose of taking crabs for recreational purposes shall not be required to purchase or possess a basic recreational fishing license or be required to purchase a gear license. However, persons using crab nets or crab lines on LDWF WMAs or refuges must possess a basic and saltwater recreational fishing license or a Wild Louisiana Stamp.