Stinker’s Fishin’: Great season for whiting

On his first whiting expedition Sydney visitor Jai Atkinson struck it rich on Stockton Beach.

IT has happened every year that I can recall and long before that. Around October – November, into the summer months, whiting pour out of the southern river systems and swim northwards along the beaches as part of their annual breeding cycle.

Whiting from Lake Macquarie and the Hunter River swim out into the open ocean and travel along Stockton Beach.

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It is Stockton Beach that has provided some of the very best whiting fishing that can be experienced along the east coast.

This summer was no exception.

With a permit, locals and visitors alike drive along the beach searching for the ideal conditions to target cracker whiting that grow to an impressive 40cm.

Deeper water that forms as the tide rises is a sure sign that whiting will be under the white water scavenging for small shellfish and worms.

Without doubt, the best bait to target whiting is a sea worm. Those who have learnt to catch worms are at an advantage as accessing worms can be difficult.

During the summer months worms are in high demand from local bait and tackle outlets with the cost of a single worm rising each year.

All reports this season suggest that the whiting fishing has been excellent with the fish being bigger and in greater numbers than in past years.

With the water temperature hovering around 21 degrees it is expected that whiting will remain on the beach until a drop in temperature will result in the fish continuing on their northerly mission.

By John ‘Stinker’ CLARKE

Young Hunter Pavey with a bucket of cracker Stockton Beach whiting.

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