The fishing season for snow crabs began on Friday in the Sea of Japan off Fukui Prefecture.
Boats carrying the renowned winter delicacy unloaded their haul at ports in the prefecture.
Around 50 fishing boats set out from Echizen port in Fukui Prefecture just after 10 p.m. on the previous night.
Fishermen aboard the Itoku-maru started placing nets in the water the moment the clock struck midnight. When the nets were hauled in about 90 minutes later, a large pile of snow crabs formed on the deck. Some of the crabs had shells as large as 15 centimeters wide.
The ship's captain said the catch was better than the first haul last year. He is hoping for a bumper catch.
Amid concern that the coronavirus outbreak could hamper demand and lower prices, the Fukui prefectural government plans to help retailers offer a discount of 3,000 yen, or around 30 dollars, for anyone who purchases a gift package worth about 190 dollars or more.
The fishing season runs through March next year for male crabs and until the end of this year for female ones.