Whitebaiting in the surf near Okarito River mouth, Westland, West Coast
PHOTO: Jo Macpherson | DOC


Find out about whitebaiting regulations. The whitebait fishing season opens on 15 August, except for the West Coast where it opens on 1 September.

The whitebait fishing season for most of New Zealand opens on 15 August and runs until November 30. 

On the West Coast the whitebait season runs from 1 September until 14 November.

These pages are a summary of the regulations. The full regulations are available on the New Zealand Legislation website.

Stay safe

There are risks with whitebaiting. Take reasonable steps to ensure the safety of friends, family and yourself when carrying out recreational activities around waterways. 

Check, Clean, Dry

To prevent the spread of freshwater pests always Check, Clean, Dry all boats and recreational equipment between waterways. See MPI's advice for cleaning your fishing equipment.

Read more about biosecurity.

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