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Author Topic: European By Crabs and Worms  (Read 2020 times)

Offline logola512c

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European By Crabs and Worms
« on: September 04, 2020, 12:27:46 PM »
Hi folks, I have 2 Questions for folks here. 

1 -- I'm going to experiment this weekend by putting a bear skull (frozen at this point, but skinned and most of the meaty stuff off, but didn't pull the brains and eyes out) in a crab pot.  Any ideas for how long I should soak it to let the crabs and sea critters pick it clean or as clean as it will likely get?

2 -- I buried a deer skull (fur and everything still on it) last fall in my backyard rain garden.  Would prefer to pull it up when nature's worm and beetle crews are "done."  Any thoughts on whether it might be ready?

Thanks, and I appreciate any thoughts folks might have.

And before someone asks, I had a big bear skull that was done professionally by a member here in Snoqualmie that uses dermestid beetles, and it was fantastic.  I'm not expecting comparable results from either of the methods described above -- just experimenting on less-than-trophy quality skulls. 

Offline Tbar

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2020, 12:32:11 PM »
I have played a little bit with trying this. It's not an easy task. I would think the deep where shrimp and sand fleas would be far more effective.  :twocents:

Offline Stein

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2020, 12:33:46 PM »
If there are a bunch of crab in the area, 3-4 hours!  There are other thing like sand fleas as well, nothing rots on the ocean floor.

I would try overnight, but act fast as crab closes on the 7th in most places.


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Offline logola512c

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2020, 12:38:58 PM »
Thanks for the quick feedback.  My plan is to throw the pot over the side of a pier where I can check it fairly regularly, but that also means it'll just be crabs and critters but no shrimp.  Also figured I'd put a GoPro in there so I can see what critters end up doing the best work.  My thinking was also that I should try to minimize the total time in the saltwater to avoid too much impact on the bones.  I guess I'll find out soon enough...

Offline blindluck

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2020, 07:42:56 PM »
I would think a crab might damage the bone vs bugs crawling in every little nook and cranny and not disturbing the fragile areas.

Offline Stein

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2020, 07:58:24 PM »
If you leave it overnight, chances are you will get shrimp.  I've seen them in 30-40' of water at night scuba diving, they come up to feed and back down with the light.

Offline logola512c

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2020, 01:06:04 PM »
Update...I left the pot out for about 24 hours, but the crabs didn't accomplish very much.  Although to be fair I think someone pulled the pot at some point and the sides collapsed when they put it back in so possible that the crabs might not have had the best access the whole time.  I'll try to figure out how to post the 7 second time lapse video.  There were a lot of crabs in the first 90 minutes or so.  Oh, I also left all the doors propped open so they were free to come and go.  I wasn't too interested in keeping any downtown Seattle crabs...

Offline logola512c

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2020, 01:07:17 PM »
So now the soggy bear head has a home next to the deer in the rain garden...

Offline snake

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2020, 08:14:52 PM »
Might want to rinse the salt water off of it after ward, not sure what it would do?

Offline Gus

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #9 on: November 04, 2020, 09:00:04 AM »
I would be worried about losing teeth in the crab pot. Could put it in a mesh bag but then then the crab aren't going to be able to get to it. I buried a couple skulls a few year back and the bugs did a pretty good job. Good luck!

Offline Bullkllr

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2020, 10:03:36 AM »

2 -- I buried a deer skull (fur and everything still on it) last fall in my backyard rain garden.  Would prefer to pull it up when nature's worm and beetle crews are "done."  Any thoughts on whether it might be ready?


I've buried a few with good results and I know they weren't buried for a whole year. I did skin 1st and remove most flesh though. I have to imagine most of the work gets done in the warmer months. If you check and it's not done just re-bury; I don't think you'd have anything to lose at any point. :twocents:
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Offline WAcoueshunter

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2020, 10:13:32 AM »
I buried a javelina skull in a raised bed and left it through the winter and spring, then dug it late spring so I could plant my garden.  Strikes me it was 6-8 months total, and was pretty clean when I pulled it out.   I would think you are good to go on the deer skull after a full year. 

Offline jackelope

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #12 on: November 04, 2020, 10:28:22 AM »
I'm pretty sure you'll have to degrease it to prevent it from stinking really really bad over time.
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Offline WAcoueshunter

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #13 on: November 04, 2020, 10:54:14 AM »
I'm pretty sure you'll have to degrease it to prevent it from stinking really really bad over time.

 :yeah:  I did boil mine after it came out of the garden - if nothing else, you need to get the dirt back out. 

I just got set up with a $35 bucket heater for this purpose.  It simmers at about 180 degrees, can use a five gallon bucket. With that, I'd fill the bucket with water and some Dawn soap and let it simmer for a few hours, I bet it would come out pretty clean after that. 

Offline Pathfinder101

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Re: European By Crabs and Worms
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2020, 12:08:32 PM »
As was mentioned earlier, I would worry about the teeth (especially in a crab pot).  I have boiled a few bear skulls and putting the teeth back in after you are done is always a jigsaw puzzle.

 I guess I am just too impatient to bury it and leave it for months.  If I boil it, I'll be done with it today.  Then I soak it in Dawn and water for a few weeks to suck the grease out as much as possible.  Then I glue the teeth back in, paint Volume 40 peroxide on it for a day, wash, dry and set in the sun for a day.  Done.  :twocents:
Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes.  That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

 


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