Velvet Crab

Crab velvet
© Tasmanian Government. Image Peter Gouldthorpe
Season: Open all year

bag limit15


possession limit30


boat limit-

(inshore crab species combined)

Guide to symbols

bagBag Limit
housePossession Limit
boatBoat Limit

Minimum size

See Crab Fishing for more information.

Other names

red swimmer crab, rough rock crab, red velvet crab

Scientific name

Nectocarcinus tuberculosus

Grows to

Up to

8cm across the carapace

Identifying features

​A medium sized crab with a reddish brown carapace often covered with a brownish velvety coating. It has a small notch at the front of the carapace midway between the eyes.


Female crabs with eggs cannot be kept. One bait trap can be used. Specialised crab traps cannot be used.


Common on exposed inshore reef areas in depths up to 50 metres.

Fishing information

This species sometimes enters rock lobster pots or is taken by divers by hand.


Caution as this crab can inflict a painful nip with its frontal claws.

Public Health advice

Follow any public health alerts relating to eating wild shellfish - refer to the Department of Health and Human Services or phone their hotline on 1800 671 738.


This crab is good eating and can be cooked whole by boiling, or stir-frying in the Asian style. It can be time-consuming to extract the meat but it is sweet and tasty.


Fishwatch Report illegal fishing

0427 655 557

What to report? arrow button

Contact us

Recreational Fishing

Level 3, 134 Macquarie St

Hobart TAS 7000

Phone: (03) 6165 3233, 1300 720 647


Commercial Fisheries

Level 3, 134 Macquarie St

GPO Box 44

Phone: (03) 6165 3000, 1300 368 550


Commercial Fisheries Licensing

Level 1, 134 Macquarie St

GPO Box 44

Phone: (03) 6165 3000, 1300 368 550