Popper Fishing For Whiting in Australia


Whiting are another popular fish targeted in Australia, they are reasonably plentiful in the summer months. They were until the last few years recognized as a bottom feeding fish that’s diet was primarily worms, yabbies, prawns and shrimp. They call sand banks home due to the food source that lives in these areas.

Light fishing gear is all that is required to catch a feed of these fiery little battlers as they are an amazing little fighter with a few jumps thrown in for good measure. They are referred to as the poor man’s bonefish because they hold some similarities to a highly sought after sportfish known as a bonefish.

Basically a standard rig of a sinker, a swivel and a long shank hook is all that is required. Worm baits are hardly ever refused with yabbies and prawns running a close second. These fish travel in large schools and when they are in the mood it’s not difficult to catch multiple figures.

There has been a massive upsurge in interest in these fish over the last 2 or 3 years, as it has been discovered that these fish will willingly take surface lures. A professional fishing guide on the south coast of Australia was looking for a snag less way of fishing for bream as his clients were having trouble with snagging the bottom too often.

So he had his clients use surface lures, to their surprise they started catching a whiting here and there and thought nothing of it, then one day he thought lets go and specifically target whiting and see how we go, and you guessed it the whiting captures increased dramatically.

This spawned a whole new method and now thousands of angles purposely target whiting on surface lures. The lure is worked quickly across the surface almost as if you are trying to pull it away from the fish, but this seems to fire up the whiting even more as he clumsily swipes at the lure until they eventually get hooked or lose interest.

The fish think the lure is a prawn or bait fish scooting across the surface fleeing for its life. Pound for pound they are a hard fighting fish and on light gear they are a handful. A couple of hours poppering for whiting is a great way to spend a sunny summer afternoon, with the reward being a feed of arguably one of Australia’s finest table fish.