Ereporting Blue Crab

Blue Crab Pilot Project

Bushel of Oysters and Crabs(1)The Blue Crab Design Team, recognizing a need for increased accountability within the industry, led the state to realize the inefficiencies in the current commercial harvest reporting system. This realization allowed the state to take action and begin their first pilot project to test the ability for a commercial fishing industry to report using an electronic harvest reporting system in 2012.

Why blue crab?

The collaboration amongst the Blue Crab design team and the MDNR resulted in recognizing a need for better accountability within the Maryland commercial blue crab industry.  The two organizations realized that a significant percentage of the issue was occurring due to the lack of accurate harvest reporting and because of that, the state decided to take action and develop an electronic harvest reporting system that could improve efficiency and accuracy in harvest reporting for all commercial fisheries, beginning with the blue crab fishery.

Time Frame

The pilot program began in 2012 and has progressed over the following three years.


Group training sessions were provided during the beginning of the pilot program to inform participants how to report using various mobile devices, on the different forms of harvest verification that could occur and on how to provide feedback and get help.


Over the three year span of the project, approximately 150 watermen have participated, submitting over 10,000 crabbing trips in the FACTSTM system. Nearly all gear types used to harvest blue crabs were represented in the pilot programs with the majority of participants using crab pots or trotline. One dealer submitted dealer reports through FACTSTM.


Those watermen that elected to report their harvest using the electronic reporting system FACTSTM were given the incentive to have a “flexible” day off, meaning that each week they could choose a different day to take off instead of being required to take off on Sunday or Monday.


Throughout the pilot project, participant feedback was collected through targeted feedback calls and voluntary feedback collected at training sessions, outreach events or via the provided help line. After the second year of the pilot, a feedback meeting was held to collect participants’ answers to a feedback survey as well as any additional voluntary comments they may have.

For additional project details or to sign up

Please Call 1-877-979-1820.

We also participating n the striped bass e-reporting system. Click here for details on that program.