Published On: Thu, May 21st, 2015

Whitebait Scoop Netting at the Rakaia River Mouth, Canterbury – November 2011

Whitebait Scoop Netting Rakaia River Mouth

Photographs Allan Burgess

Whitebaiters fish the surf on the north side of the Rakaia River mouth during late November 2011. Often the best runs of whitebait are towards the end of the season.

Whitebaiters fish the surf on the north side of the Rakaia River mouth during late November 2011. Often the best runs of whitebait are towards the end of the season.

Nets down as a wave rolls up the beach carrying with it the wriggling whitebait.

Nets down as a wave rolls up the beach carrying with it the wriggling whitebait.

Every now and again a much bigger wave comes sweeping in. It is essential to keep a sharp lookout should a quick retreat back up the beach become necessary. Several sets of eyes on the lookout are an advantage.

Every now and again a much bigger wave comes sweeping in. It is essential to keep a sharp lookout should a quick retreat back up the beach become necessary. Several sets of eyes on the lookout are an advantage.

Others prefer to fish a safer spot further back up the gut where the waves can't reach.

Others prefer to fish a safer spot further back up the gut where the waves can’t reach.

The wearing of life jackets is a precaution well worth taking. On most days one side of the river mouth will be better for whitebaiting than the other. Which side will be best depends on the shape of the mouth, the state of the tide, and the volume of water passing out through the mouth.

The wearing of life jackets is a precaution well worth taking. On most days one side of the river mouth will be better for whitebaiting than the other. Which side will be best depends on the shape of the mouth, the state of the tide, and the volume of water passing out through the mouth.

As the waves recede there is time to tip the contents of your net into a container around your waist.

As the waves recede there is time to tip the contents of your net into a container around your waist.

Video of whitebait scoop netting at the mouth of Canterbury’s Rakaia River.

About the Author

- Fishingmag.co.nz website editor.

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