King George Whiting

Latin name: Sillaginodes punctata

Common name: Whiting

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Wild Caught


Key Facts

  • King George whiting are caught in VIC, SA and WA. Stocks are mainly considered healthy.
  • Management actions put in place in SA have supported the rebuilding of a previously depleted stock of King George whiting in Spencer Gulf.
  • The SA Gulf St Vincent stock remains depleted, meaning that there is significant cause for concern. Where possible we recommend sourcing SA KGW from the healthier West Coast and Spencer Gulf fisheries, which provide over 80% of the SA catch.
  • King George whiting grows and reproduces quickly and so is relatively resilient to fishing pressure.
  • It is caught by lines and haul nets in coastal waters. These methods of fishing generally have low impacts on marine habitats and threatened species.

Cooking & Recipes


King George Whiting is the most highly-regarded of all the Whitings, prized for its firm, clean, sweet-tasting white flesh and its delicate flake. Very fresh specimens can be thinly sliced or diced and eaten raw as sashimi or in a ceviche. They are great to pan fry or BBQ whole or as fillets. Whiting can become dry if overcooked, so a coating such as a crumb or batter is often used to protect the flesh from direct heat. Try pan frying or deep-frying after coating. Whole fish can be baked in the oven with a little oil, lemon and salt. Whiting’s delicate flesh also suits it to steaming, which will help keep it juicy and moist.

More information

  • SA Marine Scalefish Fishery (272t in 2015-16)
  • WA South Coast Estuarine Managed Fishery, West Coast Estuarine Managed Fishery (24t in 2015)

King George whiting are caught mainly in SA and VIC, with very small catches in WA. A number of different stocks have been identified, and fisheries reports indicate that stocks are generally healthy based on a variety of different measurements of stock health, including analysis of fishery catch records and records of the age and length of fish caught over time.

The previously depleted stock from Spencer Gulf in SA has shown significant improvement following the implementation of protective management measures (such as area closures important to the species during spawning time).

Recovery of the depleted King George whiting stock in the Gulf St. Vincent stock has not been documented, meaning that there is significant cause for concern for the stock in this area. Management actions are in place to support recovery of the species, including measures for recreational fishers, who take around the same number of King George whiting as the commercial sector. Where possible we recommend sourcing SA King George Whtiing from the larger and healthier West Coast and Gulf St. Vincent fisheries, from which around 80% of the SA catch is sourced.

The stock status of King George whiting targeted in WA appears healthy.

King George whiting is caught on lines and in haul nets in coastal waters. These types of fishing methods generally have low impacts on marine habitat and threatened species, although increased reporting by independent fisheries observers would provide additional confidence in reporting of endangered species interactions.