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  1. #1

    Whiting breeding habits

    Can anyone enlighten me on the breeding habits of summer whiting? we fished Bribiei midweek and caught 16 whiting all being male bar 1 female.I know later in the season the opposite applies.Do they spawn in Bribie passage at Caloundra or elsewhere?any
    The bigger ones all seem to be females in row.
    It would be very helpful if anyone knows or has a theory

  2. #2

    Re: Whiting breeding habits

    I can see that there is a lot of interest re breeding habits but not much information.Would Ausfish moderators point me in the right direction? Would DPI know anything and a number or a contact person would be good .Hoping someone can shed some light on this subject.

  3. #3

    Re: Whiting breeding habits

    Quote Originally Posted by pegleg View Post
    I can see that there is a lot of interest re breeding habits but not much information.Would Ausfish moderators point me in the right direction? Would DPI know anything and a number or a contact person would be good .Hoping someone can shed some light on this subject.
    Sorry mate. Don't know a thing about their breeding habits.

    Sent from my D6503 using Tapatalk

  4. #4

    Re: Whiting breeding habits

    Probably similar to bream, up here in the top end of Pumistone Passage the bigger male bream come in from the sea about a month before the girls.

  5. #5

    Re: Whiting breeding habits

    As with many species of fish, the timing of spawning varies over the range of the species, with gonad development indicating that spawning in the southern New South Wales region occurs from December to April,[15] while spawning in southern Queensland occurs from September to February.[16] Spawning takes place twice a year, evident by the two classes of egg size found in the ovaries and by the two recruitment pulses observed each year as young fish enter their juvenile habitats.[17] The spawning takes place at the mouths of estuaries or in surf zones, with the larvae occurring in fully marine waters.[18] Juveniles reach 16.5 cm in length after their first year of life, 26.7 cm after their second year and 30.5 cm after their third year.[19] After the beginning of the spawning season young whiting of 10 mm and over can be observed swimming actively in small droves of from 10 to 20 on the sand flats and beaches to which they are recruited, moving up and down with the tide, swimming in very shallow water to depths of 1 m.[11] Unlike closely related sillaginids, the juveniles usually prefer unprotected sand substrates, while other species tend to use seagrass and mangroves as protection.[20] As they grow older they keep further from the shore

  6. #6

    Re: Whiting breeding habits

    Sand whiting probably spawn twice each season (Ref. 1254, 27633). Spawning occurs at peak high tide, at night, and 1-2 days before the new moon (Ref. 6390).

  7. #7

    Re: Whiting breeding habits

    Pegleg, i am from the Gold Coast so this info applies to down here.

    From September to April is spawning time and spawning will occur in our Seaway on each full and new moon around the top of the tide so the fertilized eggs move offshore where they hatch.

    During the non spawning period they will move back upstream and feed heavily getting ready for the next spawning season.

    Depending on how good a condition each fish is in they can spawn more than once in a season.

    Something similar to this will occur in the northern end of Pumistone Passage at Coloundra Bar entrance i would imagine,, cheers wayne

  8. #8

    Re: Whiting breeding habits

    Pegleg, over the last week or so I have noticed a few anglers catching some large whiting.I haven't checked at the ramps though to see if anyone is cleaning any but I would presume they would be be males this early.

  9. #9

    Re: Whiting breeding habits

    Dignity we had 2 good catches this week in the Nerang and they were 80% roed up females the warm winter has started their spawning.

    Unfortunately i can't get photos to load on the site to show this, other areas may be different, cheers wayne

  10. #10

    Re: Whiting breeding habits

    Here is an extract on whiting biology and from my book Environmental History and Ecology of Moreton Bay. The initial spawning period of many of our inshore species is triggered by changes in day length and in the case of sand whiting it is when the days start to get longer. Spawning generally occurs at and directly adjacent to surf bars and most likely on the flood tide as this allows the larvae to recruit back into estuaries. Temperature is a critical factor in larval development and juvenile recruitment.


    Three species of whiting are of fishery significance in Moreton Bay: the diver (trumpeter) whiting (Sillago maculata), the sand whiting (Sillago ciliata) and the yellowfin (golden-lined) whiting (Sillago analis). The diver whiting is endemic to the Australian east coast, and the sand whiting extends from south-east Tasmania northwards to Cape York (and into Papua New Guinea). The diver whiting was historically referred to as the “winter” whiting and the other two species “summer” whiting, but these terms are a misnomer as they occur and can be caught in Moreton Bay year round. Moreton Bay is generally recognised as the southernmost limit of the distribution of yellowfin whiting on the Australian east coast, with the species extending northwards and across northern Australia, then south into Western Australia to approximately Shark Bay. Diver whiting are also referred to as winter whiting, and sand and yellowfin as summer whiting, despite all three species being present and caught year-round in Moreton Bay (although they differ seasonally in where they occur). All three species are harvested by recreational fishers, but sand whiting is the dominant species for the commercial sector.

    Weng (1986) examined habitat use of the three whiting species (subadults and adults) in Moreton Bay and concluded that diver whiting were distributed almost throughout the Bay, to depths of 30 m. Sand and yellowfin whiting typically occurred in shallow water, from the shoreline to 3–5 depth, respectively. In the shallow waters, sand whiting prefer sandy seabed, while yellowfin whiting prefer mud-sandy substrates. Juveniles of the three species inhabit shallow shores, including lower sections of creeks and rivers; but sand whiting prefer sandy substrates with water <1 m deep. Yellowfin whiting also favour this depth, albeit with a preference for a muddier substrate, while juvenile diver whiting stay in muddy-sand to muddy substrates 1–3 m deep (Weng 1983). Critically, newly settled and metamorphosing whiting larvae of all three species utilise intertidal pools as habitat and feed on meiofaunal copepods and nematodes before moving to adjacent subtidal habitats (Krück et al. 2009). This highlights the importance of this type of habitat for the life-cycle of whiting in Moreton Bay, despite the relatively short residence time (days) of the species in that habitat. Whiting populations may therefore be impacted by the removal or significant modification of such habitat.

    The spawning period of sand whiting in Moreton Bay extends from September through to March, with spawning most likely occurring at the mouth of estuaries or in the surf zone (Morton 1985; Goodall et al. 1987). From personal observation, yellowfin whiting have a similar spawning period in Moreton Bay. Diver whiting spawn on the eastern side of Moreton Bay between July and February, with a peak in September/October (Weng 1986; Hannan and Williams 1998). All three whiting species are likely to spawn more than once during their spawning season (Hannan and Williams 1998).

    Female sand whiting grow quicker than males, particularly after sexual maturity (Stocks et al. 2011; Ochwada-Doyle et al. 2014). A similar trend is evident for diver whiting (Kendall and Gray 2009). In the Clarence River (northern New South Wales), size at maturity for sand whiting was estimated at 19.1 cm fork length for females and 17.1 cm for males (Ochwada-Doyle et al. 2014); this provides a guide to the likely size at maturity for this species in Moreton Bay. For diver whiting, length at first maturity is estimated at 12.6 cm total length for males and 14.1 cm for females (Hoyle et al. 2000). Sand whiting reach a maximum age of ~10 years, and diver whiting a maximum age of 12 years (Kendall and Gray 2009).

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