Whiting Tackle and Tips
Local knowledge of whiting behavior can play a pretty significant role in your success of catching a good bag of whiting, especially in tidal streams. The reason for this, is because whiting tend to prefer one tide over another in different locations. For example the whiting in the lower end of Port Phillip Bay might bite better on an outgoing tide, opposed to the whiting who are located at the top end of the bay. This example can be applied across Australia. Another example of local knowledge can be seen in the upper reaches of Western Port Bay where water flowing off the banks is severely dirty and not beneficial to good whiting fishing at all.
There is heaps of gear on the market that you can utilise for whiting fishing. Some are unassuming and low-cost, and others can be elaborate and expensive gear. So it really is up to the angler’s preference and budget. Whiting can be great fun to hook onto especially on light tackle and they always deliver an awesome fight, keep this in mind when you are selecting your gear.
Whiting are a very curious fish and often will follow and have a good look at a lure or a bait, when it’s on the move. It’s a good idea to keep this in mind when choosing your rigs.
There are many variations of rig types that you can make that will catch you some good whiting. One variation is to use a small swivel with a lightly weighted sinker above it and have a mono trace of about 50 centimetres secured from the swivel to your choice of hook. Use a red plastic tube or even red lumo bead on the leader just above the hook. The purpose of the tube or bead is to get the attention of the fish and to entice them to investigate. For the most part, if the fish comes over for a look, the chances are it will try and have a feed on your bait.
Ensure that you invest in the sharpest hooks that you can afford, as this sometimes can make huge difference. Even if you buy a cheaper hook, then do yourself a favour and by a hook sharpener from your local tackle shop or even online. An alternative to this is you can use a sharpening stone. I used to ditch my hooks after they had been in the water after one session, until I bought a hook sharpener, this is a handy tip if you are using pre-made rigs, like flasher rigs, it will give them a longer life.
A few TIPS to catching a bag of whiting
Here are our top tips for catching these timid fish:
- Keep your line as light as practicable and in line with the environment you are fishing. Whiting are typically hooked in sandy areas so you can easily use one or two-kilo leader.
- Use a small sinker on your rigs, again adjust this to the area you are fishing based on the water movement and depth.
- Use a mix of hook such as small long-shank and circle hooks this will allow you to fish multiple rods, ensure that you cast out in a fan shape, this will help you cover a great area of water.
- Change up your fish with multiple bait types until you see what is working the best. This may fluctuate day to day.
- Keep on the move - keep changing up your location if you haven’t had a bite within 15 minutes.
- Burley up hard with discarded mussel or pipis shells, and other fish products.
- When you have located a school of whiting, try casting back to the same spot, upon retrieval whiting will vomit up their lunch, this will help to keep the school in your location. So leave the fish in the water as long as you can.