Hollie Alvarez Hooks May 11th, 2019 - 13:08:50
There are two basic types of circle hook available to fishermen and commercial fishing boats in Guatemala, the offset and non-offset. The latter have been used for over 20 years in the commercial Central America and Guatemalan longline industry - as obviously in the vast majority of cases the fishermen are not present when the fish is actually taking the bait, and so they found and developed a hook that was capable of self-hooking on a consistent basis in the rich fishing territory off the coats of Costa Rica and Guatemala. It was found that circle hooks and J-hooks displayed similar catch rates, but that 98% of fish were caught in the jaw with circle hooks.
In the beginning, all one needs in fishing is a hook and a line. But today different fishing conditions require different tackle, and hook styles were invented in reply to fit them. Yet even so, many styles are multifunctional although developed for their own particular purposes. Therefore we shall discuss only the general styles though variations for each exist in the fishing industry.
The O'Shaughnessy style is deemed the best all-purpose type, and many variations are available. This style has a small eye turned perpendicular to the bend and point, and with the shank bent a little forward. Variations include the baitholder, with the small points at the shank to hold the soft bait; and snelled hooks with turned-in or -out eyes, sold with short leaders already tied. Weedless hooks are those with a short piece of wire from the eye to the point, to ward off weeds and other water debris from lodging in the hook bend or point. Weedless hooks are mostly used in fishing water with thick vegetation, either with bait or as flyhook. Many hooks can be rigged weedless, though.
Hook size is probably the first thing a sea angler should think of when buying hooks. Most are smart enough to know which hook is the right size for the fish they are after but it takes experience. Sizes from most manufacturers range from the very smallest freshwater trout hook at a number 32, to the very largest game fish hook at 19/0.
My personal favourites are Sakuma Singers and Mustad Worm hooks for flatfish and Mustad Aberdeen and Ultra Point Bass Hooks for Bottom Fishing for Huss off the rocks where a stronger hook is needed but a larger gape for bigger baits is required.
CIRCLE Perhaps the best innovation in hooks to come along, circle hooks promote healthy catch and release. The design of the hook itself, when used properly, prevents fish from being hooked in the gut. Many sea anglers have a problem using these hooks because they require no hook set. If you do try to set the hook, it will generally come out of the mouth of the fish. These hooks are designed to move to the corner of the fish's mouth and set themselves as the fish swims away from you. Anglers feel a bite and simply begin reeling, slowly at first, then faster as the hook gets set.