>
 
> FishingBoating-World.com
 
 
News Home Newsletters Photo Gallery Powerboat-World Australian Cruising World Cruising MarineBusiness-World Animated Knots
Video Gallery MarineBusiness-World
Sail-World.com : Chasing the humble whiting.
Chasing the humble whiting.


'Grab a yabbie pump and collect fresh bait. It's much better than anything frozen you can buy.'    Lee Brake    Click Here to view large photo

This week, Lee goes back to basics a little and looks at those tasty, silver delicacies – the sand whiting. In north Queensland, these fish are starting their winter run.

There has been a lot written of over the years about catching whiting on hard bodied lures, soft plastics, fly and even poppers. As much as I love alternative techniques, the age old method that I was taught by my grandfather still holds a place in my heart and fills the shoulder bag with tasty fillets and I'd like to share it with you this week.

As an easily accessible fish for both boaties and bank-bound anglers the whiting is an ideal target species for those who want to introduce the kids to fishing and still bring home some extremely tasty fillets. Many years ago my father and grandfather set me up with a whippy rod and some yabbies and on my very first fishing trip I caught the only legal fish, a whiting. I was so proud my head almost exploded and I’ve been hooked ever since!

Viv Brake and a young Lee Brake with a feed of tasty winter whiting. This is the best species for getting kids into fishing – it worked with the author! -  Lee Brake   Click Here to view large photo

The water is cooling down and the winter months are here, bringing a larger and more prolific class of fish to the Mackay area – the winter whiting. These larger fish make for an absolutely mouth-watering feed and can be an adrenalin rush on ultra-light gear. As I have mentioned, there are stacks of techniques out there but what I will share with you is what my grandfather, Viv Brake taught me.

The Bait

While worms, pipis and peeled prawns all work at times, I’m yet to find a more productive bait than the saltwater yabby (or lobby). Yabbies can be found at various beds across Queensland, usually in large sandy flats beside creek beds or along beaches. If in doubt, ask a local tackle shop. In Mackay, there are several beds, including Bassett Basin (or Martins Flats to the older generation), Far Beach, Cremorne, Hospital Bridge and the mouth of Seaforth Creek to name just a few. As a point of interest, all of these beds will attract whiting as they are covered by a rising tide, so find the bait and often you’ll find the fish.

Get a cane creel if you can. They keep yabbies fresher longer! -  Lee Brake   Click Here to view large photo

Whiting will take most things. This one took Zac Hunts popper. However, the old yabbie on a long shank is still the easiest. -  Lee Brake   Click Here to view large photo

To gather yabbies, duck down to your local tackle shop and for between $30 and $50 you’ll be able to buy a reasonable yabby pump and a creel. A good pump will last generations but the washer that produces its suction is prone to decomposition so always buy a spare. In an emergency an old pair of thongs can yield a very effective washer when cut to fit. With regards to creels, do some hunting and try to track down a cane one. Cane creels allow for more air flow and drainage and will keep bait healthy longer.

The Gear

Whiting are great for beginners because a $20 kid’s rod with a soft supple tip and light line will catch more fish than a $500 G Loomis graphite blank. The key is the tip. Often called a ‘nibble tip’ a good whiting rod should contain little resistance or strength in the last 30cm of the blank. This will allow a timid fish to practically hook itself and will greatly reduce pulled hooks.

For a reel use something compact like a 2500 or smaller. Use the lightest monofilament line that you are comfortable with (braid is usually too abrupt; stretch is good for whiting). I like four-sixlb. Quality is also important. If you buy a cheap combo with line pre-spooled, it might pay to toss it and buy some decent mid-range mono (Any Platypus lines are ideal). Where there’s whiting however, there’s usually flathead, so use a decent leader between 12lb and 20lb.

A little long shank hook and a bit of red tubing is simple and effective. -  Lee Brake   Click Here to view large photo

Terminal tackle is simple, a running sinker rig comprised of a one-two sized ball sinker, a size eight-10 swivel, one metre of light, supple leader, a small piece of red tubing or beads and lastly a long-shanked, chemically sharpened hook between a size one/zero and a size four.

Location, Location, Location

Whiting are most commonly a school fish which travel with the tidal flow and use their long snout and rubbery lips to forage the sand for food. Taking this into account, a good whiting spot should be rich in food and have a soft, preferably sandy bottom. Yabby beds are ideal, as are beach gutters due to the wave action which uncovers pipis, worms and other prey. Once you have located a likely spot it’s all down to timing.

Timing is essential and while the debate over the best part of the tide for whiting can rage like a soccer riot, I can only pass on what I do. Our success has usually come on a rising tide. Once we find a likely spot we attempt to pump yabbies early and be at the spot as the first of the tide arrives.

A handy piece of equipment is a pair of polarized sunglasses (I wear Tonics). These will not only block the glare but allow you to see schools of whiting as they arrive in the shallow. Once located by their tell-tale flash of silver, a whiting school can produce one fish one after another.

To maximize your catch stay mobile. Whiting will consistently move up with the tide so a good fisherperson needs to move with them. An old belt will fix your yabby creel to your hip and a basic shoulder bag will hold fish, tackle and a water bottle and provide maximum mobility.

Hooking Up

Whiting can be one of the most finicky fish in the ocean or more aggressive than a Bengal Tiger in heat; it all depends on the day. Smaller whiting are usually characterized by their machinegun-like bite. With these rat-a-tat-tat style pickers, a soft tip and some patience is essential, but remember even a small whiting can shred a yabby quick smart. Patience can pay off with the odd legal fish, but often it can be a case of giving up and moving in search of bigger fish.

Larger whiting are a different kettle of fish but the same principles remain. Often your larger fish suck a bait down with just a gradual increase of pressure, which is where a soft tip once again comes into play. If the tip is too rigid, the fish will feel the weight too early and the hook will simply pull free.

A light tip is essential for whiting! The lighter and softer the better. -  Lee Brake   Click Here to view large photo

The trick is to respond to the increase in pressure by allowing the fish some slack line. Once the slack is taken up, you can be almost sure that the fish has swallowed the bait sufficiently for a hook-up. It’s now as simple as slowing lifting the rod and allowing the flex of the tip to set the hook.

I hope I have shed some light on how to catch a feed when the whiting are biting. As an after note, a slim flexible filleting knife is the weapon of choice when cleaning your catch and even then the process is painstaking slow, so take only what fish you need for a feed. There’s no need to kill hundreds of whiting at a time, especially if you want your kids to share in the enjoyment in years to come.

Fresh whiting fillets are one of the ocean's delicacies. -  Lee Brake   Click Here to view large photo

Saltwater yabbies are great whiting bait. This one, however, might be a little big. To this day it's the biggest yabbie the author has ever seen. -  Lee Brake  

Stay warm and say hello if you see me at the yabby bed.


by Lee Brake

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.fishingboating-world.com/index.cfm?nid=109909

3:16 PM Mon 27 May 2013GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.







FishingBoating-World





























Dispersant from Deepwater Horizon Spill persist in environment by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution,






Understanding the Ocean's role in Greenland Glacier melt by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI),


Dangerous conditions for boating on entire NSW Coast by Transport Roads and Maritme Services,
















Baby Nemos finding their way home by ARC Centre of Excellence Coral Reef Studies,




Dangerous conditions forecast for NSW boaters by Roads and Maritime Services,




Whale freed from rope at Byron Bay by Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry,






Bar Crusher's fully-enclosed fishing weapons
World premieres and national debuts for Sydney International Boat Show
Marine Auctions experiencing rising tide of interest *Feature
Man fined $2000 for hawking abalone from an East Gippsland reef
New catfish species ‘hooked’ in North Qld
Emperor penguins in danger of dramatic declines
Tags reveal Chilean devil rays are among ocean's deepest divers
Auckland On Water Boat Show to hold world record attempt
Alvin's Animals - Previously unknown species discovered
Zodiac at Sydney International Boat Show 2014 – Australian
Gold Coast International Marine Expo - Exhibitor space filling fast
Lessons from the West: Great Barrier Reef in danger
If we stop killing parrotfish we can bring back Caribbean coral reefs
Decade of benefits for the Great Barrier Reef
Climate change could stop fish finding their friends
Ceramic coated exhaust manifolds reduce engine bay temps on superboat
Reminder of safe distance requirements for whales
Changes to Australian bass closed season
Commercial fishers on shore for mullet season
Management measures implemented to reduce large whale entanglements
Scientists use JeDI to create world’s first global jellyfish database   
Sanctuary Classic off to a great start!   
New Murray cod limits proposed to improve fishery   
Up close and personal with whales on the Gold Coast   
SA Marina Day encourages South Australians to enjoy their marinas   
Southport Yacht Club raffle: Dusit Thani, BRIG Falcon, Marriott stay   
Fish stocks Northeast Atlantic recover, overfishing in Mediterranean   
Enjoy the whale spectacle, just keep your distance   
Satellite images reveals emperor penguins are more willing to relocate   
Whale research - new techniques expand for non-lethal methods   
The Dinghy Nav Light Solution- a brilliantly dumb idea   
Extension granted for salvage of a paddle steamer on the Murray River   
Spike in water temperatures evidence of ‘irreversible’ El Nino *Feature   
Third CYCA Solas Trusts grant to Australian Volunteer Coast Guard   
Severe weather warnings prompt reminder to boat owners   
Hobie Sailing Scene is reopening in Mona Vale this weekend   
Predictwind unlocks more features on free accounts   
Biggest Display ever and 18 launches at SIBS   
Gold Coast International Marine Expo helps Sailability grant FREEDOM   
Free app for managing your yacht   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW FBW
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT