So many youngsters wanted to compete in the Plumber Dan Kids Fishing Competition that some missed out at the Whanganui Town Wharf on Sunday.

200 kids signed up for the competition that started at 1pm and ran through until 3pm with plenty of prizes up for grabs.

The whirring of winding reels, the whizzing of lines cast out into the green water and the "woohoo" of some big catches could be heard up and down the wharf.

One such catch was one of the earliest on the day and went to Rutherford Junior High School student Jericho Kiriona, 11, who caught a kahawai on his first cast.


"I was amazed because I knew I was going to catch it, my first one," he said.

"It took about a minute to pull in, it wasn't that long."

The kahawai weighed 1.57kg which was heavy enough to claim Jericho third place in the competition.

Everyone received a prize and they included chocolate bars, hats, fishing rods, McDonald's vouchers, drinking bottles, Columbus Coffee vouchers, rugby balls and toys.

It was Jericho's first time entering the competition and helping him out were his mum Dorothy McPherson and his dad Tama Kiriona.

"Jericho likes to do a bit of fishing so we thought we'd give it a go and obviously that worked out," Kiriona said.

"You could see it jump so we knew it was a kahawai and we were stoked."

A keen fisherman, Kiriona caught his own impressive haul on the Saturday night before his son's competition.


"It's something for me to do to relax after work. I got 14 snapper last night up Kai Iwi way," he said.

"This competition is a good idea. It gets the kids out and it's good for the community. They need more of it to be honest. The turnout is awesome."

The sponsors of the competition included Hunting & Fishing New Zealand, Bunnings Warehouse, Zip Plumbing Plus, Mars Petcare, Meteor Office Products Depot, McDonald's and Mitre 10 Mega.