Worms including beach, blood and wriggler, as well as yabbies, eugaries, (pipis) prawns and small black soldier crabs.
Whiting like to search the sea bottom for food on the shallower, cleaner banks, where there is less current flow.
A whiting’s bite is not always consistent and has to be assessed on the day. They are shy therefore too much lead directly on the bait can spook them.
To keep the bait on the bottom, a small 00 size sinker is used on top of the hook. When fishing in bright sunshine, a piece of 50mm or 80mm red plastic tube can be slid on the trace to add attraction and increase bites. Any further weight necessary, which should rarely be heavier than a No. 1 ball, is placed above a small No. 8 swivel or ring used as a sinker stop.
A good way to lure whiting is to create movement by winding the reel or slowly retrieving the bait. When the initial nibbling type of bite is felt, continue winding until the weight of the fish bends the rod.
To set the hook, increase speed of winding, at the same time lifting the rod. Do not try to strike a fish by jerking the rod.
At times, when whiting prefer to rush a stationary bait, leaving a little slack line between the reel and bait will give you time to position yourself to hook the fish. Even if it hits the bait hard, don’t react suddenly, just lift the rod and wind.
Whiting dislike very clear water, so are best targeted on a run out tide, when water is discoloured.
Any ripples or turbulence where tidal currents meet is worth investigating as it clouds the water and stirs the sand, unearthing food particles.
Whiting can be found in water as shallow as 45cm, particularly over a yabbie bank on the early run in tide.
If fishing areas with seagrass or weed beds, look for clear patches of sand between the weed.
When wading sandbanks, a shoulder-bag with compartments for bait, spare tackle and caught fish, saves unnecessary movement to and from the water, which spooks the fish.
Yabbies are a good all round bait, but wriggler, rock and bloodworms will usually produce better results. Eugaries (pipis) and surf worms are excellent baits used on surf beaches, but are not as productive in estuaries. Use a size two chemically sharpened or fine point French hook when using yabbies for bait and a smaller size three hook with worm bait.
Whiting can be unpredictable, at times difficult to identify by their bite and caught with an anchored bait in a fast running tide, therefore you need to adapt yourself to conditions.
Whiting Surf Angling:
Whiting move along the beach and are often found in the shallow corner of V shaped gutters.
A rig with a trace is best and a good technique is to rewind a few turns immediately the cast lands, to lay the trace out so that it will not become tangled.
A favoured location in some areas is the southern side of a rocky headland.
The best baits are surf worms, yabbies and eugarie (pippies), rigged on a size two or three hook.
When fishing from a beach, don’t let a hooked fish tumble in a breaking shore wave, lift your fish or it will throw the hook.