February: the whiting are biting, but beware the weather! - The Community Leader and Real Estate New and Views

Photos: Spero Kartanos.


February is a month of hits and misses. Weather-wise, some days are at their best and their worst at the same time, so you need to take notice of the weather predictions. Yes, I know they are not always correct, but we need to take notice; we don’t want another tragedy like the one we had at the end of December.

The good news is that the whiting will be in excellent numbers in the Small Boat Channel and the Rous Channel. Some tiger squid will also be throughout the bay, especially on the last of the incoming tide when the water is much cleaner.

School mackerel should be close in the bay, and the spotties will be around the deeper banks of Hope Banks and towards Peel. Finding them is just a matter of keeping your eyes focused on turns flying over the schools. Out from Mud Island towards the Sand Hills is also a great area for mackerel fishing, but remember there is a green zone out there.

Squire, snapper and sweet lip will also be available around the Bay Island drop-offs and the artificial reefs. There are also plenty of sand crabs this time of year throughout the bay, so launching a crab pot or two will get you a feed of these tasty morsels.

I have been asked a few times if you should use a sea anchor when drifting for whiting, and from my experience, the faster the drift, the better the whiting bite and chase. I prefer the big tides and the fast drift for whiting fishing, and I never use a sea anchor. Let’s hope the temperature of the water is not too hot, and the spotties come into the bay and stay a while.

Prawning should also be in full swing, so learn to cast the net, and you should catch some.

Have fun on the water, but keep a lookout for storms and stay safe. Happy fishing!

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