- Associated Press - Sunday, May 22, 2016

KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) - Fishermen in the Florida Keys say they had a steady and productive stone crab season.

Peter Bacle of Stock Island Lobster Co. tells The Citizen (http://bit.ly/1OzDKEg ) that compared with the last few seasons, production was up 25 percent this year and the claws harvested were “unusually large.”

Bacle also said harvests continued to be steady through the May 15 end of the seven-month season, instead of trickling off weeks early as in past years.

Eaton Street Seafood Market owner Sean Seaman said retail prices at the season’s close were $43.95 a pound for jumbos, $36.95 for larges and $24.95 for mediums.

State wildlife officials say that for the past several seasons, the Monroe County stone crab catch has had an estimated value of $11.5 million.

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