Recreational Crab Pot Requirements

bycatch reducation deviceThe Maryland Department of Natural Resources enacted a regulation effective April 1, 1999 which requires all recreational waterfront property owners who set crab pots attached by rope, line or pole in front of their property or privately owned pier or dock to attach a Crab Pot Turtle Reduction Device to each funnel or entrance to the lower chamber of the crab pot. This action was taken as a conservation effort to prevent air-breathing animals (turtles and muskrats) from entering and drowning in crab pots.


Below are Two Methods (Figure #2) For Making Your Own Crab Pot Turtle Reduction Device​

Galvanized wire (suggested eleven (11) gauge) or plastic

SIZE: Height 1 3/4" x Length 4 3/4"

schematic of home made CPBRD
Figure #1


Method "A"

1a. Start with 15" of wire or plastic (Figure #1) leaving approximately 1/2" piece of wire or plastic before making first bend
2a. Measure 1 3/4" from first bend and bend to form a rectangle
3a. Measure length of wire or plastic 4 3/4" make next bend
4a. Measure 1 3/4" for the second side, bend
5a. End your rectangular Crab Pot Turtle Reduction Device extending the wire or plastic approximately 1/2" past bend (1a) to form a hook (Figure #2, A)
6a. Bend or loop overlap to secure

details of the corner fastening
Figure #2


Method "B"

1b. Starting with a 16" piece of wire or plastic, measure 1" piece of wire or plastic before making first bend and follow Figure #1 instructions for making a rectangular Crab Pot Turtle Reduction Device (steps 2a, 3a, and 4a)
2b. After making the final bend leave an overlap of approximately 1"
3b. The 1" overlaps can be bent along the height and length side and secured by hog rings or plastic ties



Firmly attach a rectangular Crab Pot Turtle Reduction Device to every entrance or funnel in the lower crab pot chamber. Secure them with hog rings or by bending or crimping the crab trap wire around each. (See Figure #3)

details of securing the CPBRD to the crab trap
Figure #3

   lateral view of the placement of the CPBRD in a crab trap
Placement to the back of the opening