Although small in size, Whiting are one of the more popular saltwater surf species in the south, mainly because these fish can be easily caught from piers and bridges using light tackle. This means if you already have fresh water fishing gear, a trip to catch Whiting is less expensive than say, re-configuring for an off shore trip.
As water temperatures drop in the cooler months, many fish species slow their feeding habits. Whiting, however, bite well in the cooler early months of Spring, so instead of hanging around the house on those warm early Spring days take a trip to the beach and catch some Whiting.
When fishing from a pier or out of a boat, rig your tackle to
fish on the bottom
and use just enough weight to keep the bait on the bottom. If possible, fish so the current is flowing away from your position. This will help keep the line tight but remember the bait must be resting near the bottom to catch Whiting. Also, it is a good idea to use a light leader line. Slide an egg sinker onto the reel’s main line then tie the leader to the reel’s line with a swivel to prevent the line from twisting. Tie the hook directly to the other end of the leader line. Do not use a snap swivel at the hook, that will result in fewer bites.
Whiting have a soft body and are easy to clean. Use a spoon to scrape the scales, remove the head and gut. Wash, batter in your favorite fish meal and fry in cooking oil heated to around 350 degrees (this method is similar to that used to make southern fried catfish). Whiting can also be filleted if preferred. Whiting are an excellent pan fish.