The sky is a clear, sparkling blue, it is warm, and there could not be a more perfect day to go crabbing. The question now is, what do I take with me for bait? There are so many options to use, but the best way to approach this is to keep it simple and to use what is readily and easily available for a low cost. You can get the best bait from your butcher, animal slaughterhouse, or the local grocery store.
When crabbing with my father in Texas many years ago, we used a simple method to go after the crabs: he taught me to take string (we used a good, sturdy type that you can buy in the hardware section of your local retail store) and tied one end to a turkey neck. Then, holding onto the other end he showed me how to toss it into the water and wait for a good tug. Not too long after that, I felt the pull from the hungry claw on the other end and preceded to pull in a large, blue crab. Turkey necks that we got from the store were perfect, and we caught several large ones off of them.
Another excellent bait that we used was chicken gizzards. You had to tie them carefully on, but they would quickly produce a good tug when thrown out into the water and bring in a beauty of a crab for eating. We also used chicken livers or just the plain meat, that when tied securely, was very successful in helping to catch them. These can also be saved and frozen for later when you cook a turkey or chicken and remove the inside parts, giving you a ready made mess of bait to put in the cooler to defrost on the way to your crabbing spot.
The other key to this venture was using the parts or meat that was raw, and not cooked. Throwing out raw pieces of bait brought much better results than I feel we would have had with cooked meat, as the raw meat gives off more blood and scent. The raw meat and parts were also cheap and relatively easy to get a hold of. Our crabbing expedition brought in several tasty crabs that we added to our later fish fry that evening. That year we were also crabbing in flood waters around the area where we visited, so there was an abundance of crabs in shallow water to go for.
If you are going out to crab on your own and want to have a good time at a low expense, some of the best crab bait that you can find is some of the most reasonable, and the raw meat and parts are extremely tempting for the crabs to grab at. With some good, sturdy string and a turkey neck, you can have a great time going after the crab you desire. Also, by keeping your tools simple and inexpensive, you have more money in your pocket, crab in your cooler, and time to enjoy the fun.