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crab 1

a. Any of various chiefly marine decapod crustaceans of the infraorder Brachyura, having a hard carapace that covers a broad flattened cephalothorax with a small abdomen tucked beneath it, and an anterior pair of legs that are large and pincerlike.
b. Any of various similar decapod crustaceans, such as a hermit crab or a king crab.
c. Crabmeat.
a. A crab louse.
b. crabs Slang Infestation by crab lice.
3. The maneuvering of an aircraft partially into a crosswind to compensate for drift.
4. A machine for handling or hoisting heavy weights.
v. crabbed, crab·bing, crabs
1. To hunt or catch crabs.
2. To scurry sideways in the manner of a crab.
3. To drift diagonally or sideways, especially when under tow.
4. To direct an aircraft into a crosswind.
1. To direct (an aircraft) partly into a crosswind to eliminate drift.
2. To cause to move or scurry sideways.
catch a crab
To make a faulty stroke in rowing that causes the blade of the oar to strike the water on the recovery stroke.

[Middle English crabbe, from Old English crabba; see gerbh- in Indo-European roots.]

crab′ber n.

crab 2

1. A crabapple tree or its fruit.
2. A quarrelsome, ill-tempered person.
v. crabbed, crab·bing, crabs
v.intr. Informal
To find fault; criticize someone or something.
1. Informal To interfere with and ruin; spoil.
2. Informal To find fault with; complain about.
3. To make ill-tempered or sullen.

[Middle English crabbe, possibly from crabbe, crab (shellfish); see crab1.]

crab′ber n.


See Cancer.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. (Fishing) a crab fisherman
2. (Fishing) a boat used for crab-fishing
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
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References in periodicals archive ?
And finally, and clearly, the best part of being a crabber is a steady diet of one of the best-tasting seafood items on the menu.
It would have "skyrocketed by now," commission member and Charleston crabber Rick Lillienthal said.
"We really got started in Florida, in Cape Canaveral and Charlotte Harbor," said Read Hendon, the program director."One commercial crabber helped us out immensely by tagging over 1,000 tripletail in four years, and now the program has grown and this year we had really good growth in the number of anglers participating in the north central Gulf."
Skinner thinks maybe the shooter took aim at him not because he mistook the crabber for a cop, as is the running police theory, but to cause a ruckus.
As police searched through Sunday night, a crabber shining a spotlight on his pots in the predawn hours unwittingly found the gunman - when the man shot at the fisherman from shore.
Even though there's a deal in place, Charleston crabber Jeff Reeves said he's frustrated by the season's late start.
An RLNI lifeboat which was towing a broken-down crabber fishing vessel nearby picked up a distress message about the crash and dropped the tow to assist Mr Rogers.
His colleagues on the Scrabster-owned crabber the FV North Star managed to haul him back on board but he could not be revived.
It is believed all four men were sleeping below decks when the 48ft Stornoway crabber Louisa began taking on water in the early hours yesterday.
In addition, strong storms may transport these stored pots into the estuary and turn a crabber's lost investment into DCPs that ghost fish and kill fishes, crabs, terrapin, and other wildlife.
Hubbard explains: "We're going to pre-fab the bridges on the ground, pick the structure up with one of the biggest cranes they have in the UAE (on to the causeway), and put it on to a crabber - which is an elongated truck bed with 25ft-circumference tyres.