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Species Information

Scientific Name:Menticirrhus americanus
Common Names:sea mullet, whiting, Virginia mullet, southern kingfish, southern kingcroaker
Environment:Inshore, Surf
Ideal Temp:72-86°F (22-30°C)

About Whiting

Menticirrhus americanus, the southern kingfish, southern kingcroaker, the king whiting, the Carolina whiting, or the Sea Mullet, is a species of marine fish in the family Sciaenidae. It lives in shallow coastal waters on the western fringes of the Atlantic Ocean.

The southern kingcroaker can grow to about 50 centimetres (20 in) but a more usual adult length is 30 centimetres (12 in).

The southern kingcroaker is a slender fish, deepest about two fifths of the way along. The upper jaw projects further than the lower and the snout overhangs the mouth. There is a small barbel on the fleshy lower lip. The dorsal fin is divided into two parts. The number of spines and soft rays in the fins is indicative of the species and in M. americanus, the front part of the dorsal fin is broadly triangular and has 10 spines and the other part is long and has 1 spine and 22 to 25 soft rays. The pointed pectoral fins are large and the anal fin has 1 spine and 7 or 8 soft rays. The tail fin has a characteristic slightly concave upper lobe and a rounded lower lobe. The colour of the fish is silvery grey, sometimes with a coppery sheen, and paler grey below. There are sometimes several broad slanting bands of darker colour on the back of the fish.

The southern kingcroaker is a subtropical, demersal fish found in shallow waters in the western Atlantic Ocean. It has a discontinuous range extending from New York southwards to Texas, and from Yucatán southwards to Buenos Aires, Argentina. The northern portion of its range is interrupted its not being found in southern Florida and the southern portion of its range is interrupted by absence from the West Indies. It is found in places where the seabed is sand or mud, often on sandy beaches. The juveniles can tolerate low salinity levels and are often found in estuaries.

The southern kingcroaker feeds on benthic invertebrates. The diet consists mainly of small crustaceans such as shrimps and crabs but amphipods, polychaete worms, molluscs and small fish are also eaten and it also scavenges for detritus and carrion.

Anglers catch kingfish from piers, jetties and boats in the nearshore ocean, usually with two-hook bottom rigs baited with shrimp, mole crabs, bloodworms or squid. Anglers also use jigs or spec rigs to catch kingfish. Kingfish are often caught while fishing for weakfish.

Whiting Fishing

World Record:1.27 kg (2 lb 13 oz) Virginia Beach, Virginia, USA
# Fish Caught:2968703 documented in database.
Earliest Record:1/1/1830 12:00:00 AM and located at 29.36809, -94.84530.
Latest Record:6/28/2024 4:46:00 PM and located at 30.66968, -81.46259.
Common Techniques:Bottom Fishing, Jigging
Popular Lure Types:Bottom Rig, Jigs
Fishing Spots:860 Whiting fishing spots.

Latest Whiting Fishing Reports and Spots

06/19/2024 - 6/19/2024 10:09:07 PM

Today we had a citation pompano from ramp 48. Just over 2 pounds. Great fish. The customer had two other pomps just under the 2 pound mark. Sea (View)

06/20/2024 - 6/20/2024 9:43:01 PM

We had a citation drum come in from yesterday caught on ramp 44. Pompano today at the point. Ramp 43 had sea mullet. Blue fish reported from ra (View)

TW’S DAILY FISHING REPORT - 6/16/2024 5:15:13 PM

Fishing Report Happy Father’s Day to all the Dads! We hope you are enjoying this beautiful day! It was a great weekend for fishing whether you w (View)

Good Bluefish Fishing On Corolla Beach 6/4/24 - 6/4/2024 3:44:47 PM

Good Fishing on the beach in Duck and Corolla. We’re catching bluefish sea mullet spot croakers and trout. The post Good Bluefish Fishing On Co (View)

Good Fishing From Duck Beach 5/9/24 - 5/9/2024 11:31:10 AM

We are having some pretty good fishing from the Duck beach. Catching sea mullet bluefish puffers and some red drum. Picture of Phillip with a b (View)

Big Bluefish On Outer Banks Beaches 4/28/24 - 4/28/2024 1:16:00 PM

We have been catching some big bluefish on the Outer Banks Beaches along with some sea mullet and few red drum. The post Big Bluefish On Outer (View)

Surf Fishing Report 4/17/24 - 4/17/2024 12:40:57 PM

Surf fishing in Duck and Corolla we have been catching skate dogfish few sea mullet and drum. Water temp is 54 degrees. The post Surf Fishing R (View)

Outer Banks Fishing Report 4/5/24 - 4/5/2024 1:17:28 PM

Outer Banks Fishing Report: On the beaches in Duck and Corolla we have been catching skate dogfish and few sea mullet and drum. Picture of Mich (View)

TW’S DAILY FISHING REPORT - 12/1/2023 2:47:13 PM

Friday December 1 2023 Fishing Report We had quite a few cold and blustery days but thankfully fishing conditions have improved quite a bit! The (View)

11/21/2023 - 11/21/2023 8:34:04 PM

Reports of just a couple puppy drum caught on ramp 44 today. Some black drum down at ramp 55. Scattered reports of sea mullet up and down the b (View)