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Crawfish: Is Bigger Better?

Big Crawfish

Dat's a big ol' Mudbug!

Louisiana crawfish are no strangers to a good party. A crawfish boil is often synonymous with winter/spring fun and sliding into summer. Thus, a boiling pot of potatoes, sausage, onions, corn, various seasonings, and a big batch of crawfish is the center of many a good time. However, the question still remains, what size crawfish are the best? Is bigger really better?

Some may argue that it isn’t the size of the crawfish that matters, but what you do with it. These might say that a skilled master boiler is far more important than crawfish size.

Yet, others will debate that. Some say that a smaller crawfish is just too sweet and delicious to pass up. On the other side of the coin, someone will invariably argue that bigger gives you more bang for your buck, and that nothing beats that big, meaty bite of this mighty crustacean.

Generally speaking, someone who is avidly seeking a particular size may, at times, find out that one or the other is more difficult to come by. Bigger is often graded as “select,” yet these need time to grow, and may not always be readily available. Hence, those for the small bites could argue that these sweet little “mudbugs” are the only way to go, for anyone with a love of crawfish.

‘Field Run” is another grading term that one could find regarding live crawfish. These are not necessarily graded for size. Some will be big, and some will be small. In this case, someone of the “bigger is better” mindset might still be inclined use the smallest ones for bait, much to the chagrin of those of his buddies who love those tender-yet-tiny and bite-sized crawfish.

Other sources will use the more standardized number system. This system throws a third option into the mix, with a medium size. This option offers the big crawfish labeled as grade one, with about 12 to 15 in a pound. Medium sizes are graded as number two, and will have about 16 to 20 in a pound. Small, labeled as number three, is the final grade, with upwards of 21 delicious crawfish in a pound.

In the end, the argument you come up against might still be the same. Although, once you are in this debate, you could ask your opponent if quantity might be as big a factor as anything.

Is bigger really better? Could more be better, too? It’s up to you to decide.

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