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School Whiting (Silago) Photographs and Information

School whiting have a silver stripe along the side of their body but no dark blotch on the pectoral fin base.

School whiting are endemic to southern regions of the Australian continental shelf.   They live close to the sea bed over sandy substrates, and normally live in depths from the surf zone to about 80 metres.

Their diet is mainly Crustaceans, primarily amphipods and prawns and polychaete worms.   Juveniles consume mostly amphipods and polychaete worms.  

School Whiting, silago whiting, silago fish, sillago

schoolwhitmap.jpg (3777 bytes)

whitinschool.jpg (2208 bytes)

Scientific Name Family:  Silago
Location Australia Wide, except QLD
Season All year round
Size 30cm, 300g
Australian Species Code 37 330901
Taste, Texture Delicate, slightly sweet.  Fine Texture.


Nutritional Information
For every 100 grams raw product
for Whiting fillet.

Kilojoules 362 (86 Calories)
Cholesterol 41 mg
Sodium 70 mg
Total fat (oil) 0.6 g
Saturated fat 32% of total fat
Monounsaturated fat 21% of total fat
Polyunsaturated fat 47% of total fat
Omega-3, EPA 43 mg
Omega-3, DHA 57 mg
Omega-6, AA 42 mg

Mixed Reef Fish, Coral Trout, Snapper, Red Snapper, Grouper, Whiting, TrevallySchool Whiting is the marketing name for 3 low-medium priced species, all with a distinctive silvery stripe along the middle of their bodies. They’re all endemic to Australia and a lot of the catch is frozen whole and exported.

Southern School Whiting (Sillago bassensis), found along the southern coast from Western Port (Victoria) to Geraldton (WA), is the largest of the School Whitings.

Eastern School Whiting (Sillago flindersi), with a distinguishing row of rusty brown spots on the upper half of its sides, is found off Australia’s south eastern coast from Noosa (Qld) to Port Lincoln (SA), and is the smallest of the three.

Stout Whiting (Sillago robusta), distinguished by a yellow blotch between the eye and the pectoral fin, is found on the western coast from Fremantle to at least Shark Bay, and on the eastern coast from Bowen (Qld) to Newcastle (NSW), as well as off the Northern Territory.


Fishing Angling for School Whiting:

Whiting are generally caught using rod-and-line and handlines from shore or by boat with live baits, such as worms, soldier crabs and yabbies (nippers). Fresh peeled prawns can also be used.

Saltwater Fish - What bait to use for fishing - a list of saltwater baits with the main "diners" who will be tempted.

Cooking School Whiting:

Whiting has a delicate, sweet flavour, low oiliness and moist, medium-textured, flaky flesh with fine bones, which are easily removed. The edible skin can be left on and the bones make excellent stock.

Alternative Fish you can use:
Flathead, Bream, hussar, morwong, redfish, tarwhine.


Colour of Raw fillet:



Fine texture.

Fat Content:

Low to medium.


Delicate, slightly sweet.


whiting fillet, fillet of whiting fish
Whiting Fillet

Whiting are sold whole (gilled and gutted), as trunks (headless), and in single and butterflied fillets. In whole fish look for lustrous skin, firm flesh, and a pleasant, fresh sea smell. In fillets, look for white, firm, lustrous, moist flesh without any brown markings or oozing water and with a pleasant fresh sea smell. Sand and Yellowfin Whitings tend to naturally have a faintly yellow hue to their flesh.

Make sure whole fish is scaled, gilled, gutted and cleaned thoroughly. Wrap whole fish and fillets in plastic wrap or place in an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze whole fish for up to 6 months, and fillets for up to 3 months, below -18ºC.

Cooking & Serving
Whitings are suitable for a wide range of cooking methods: steaming, poaching, deep-frying, pan-frying, stir-frying, baking, braising, grilling, barbecuing, and raw (except for Trumpeter, which is too soft for sashimi). They have a delicate, sweet flavour (though King George can be slightly ‘peppery’), low oiliness and moist, medium-textured, flaky flesh with fine bones which are easily removed. The edible skin can be left on, the flesh has good gelling characteristics, so works well in mousseline, and the bones make excellent stock. Fillets tend to be thin in all except the largest fish, so are often best wrapped in foil or banana leaves to protect them when barbecuing or grilling. King George and Sand Whitings are good plate-sized fish for cooking whole

Microwave Cooking Times for Fish
- Fish fillets – 5 minutes per 500g on medium-high, +50 seconds more for thicker fillets, or until flesh flakes
- Whole fish - Large – 6 minutes/750g on medium
- Whole fish – Small – 3-4 minutes on medium


school whiting fillets, photo of whiting fillets, fish fillets, fillets on plate

Commercial Fishing for School Whiting:

Danish seine vessels fish in a similar method to beach seine netters however the net is hauled back into boat and not on to the beach. The net is towed along the seabed and relies on the herding effect of the towing ropes to direct the fish into the wings and then the bag (bunt) to catch fish. The depth fished will determine the species caught. Naturally the length of the hauling rope determines the depth that the net will fish. The net is laid out in a pear shape, and the ends slowly winched into the boat as the boat moves forward. These two actions draw the net wings together and forward until the fish are concentrated the bag (bunt) of the net.

Lakes Entrance has the largest Danish Seine fishery in Australia with Flathead and School whiting being the main species targeted and caught.

From Australian Marine Conservation Society (Sustainable Seafood Guide):
Seine, gillnet and trawl caught; heavily fished across much of the range but a robust, fast-growing group of species showing stable landings; gillnet and seine net caught Whiting associated with less bycatch and habitat damage than trawl caught; uncertainty over stock status in WA.


Exporters of Whiting  |  Importers of Whiting  |  Processors of Whiting  |
Wholesale Suppliers of Whiting  |  Buyers Agents for Whiting

See Also:  Blue Whiting King George Whiting Sand Whiting School Whiting Southern Blue Whiting




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