Kahle Hook w/ weedguard 2/0 to 5/0
I try to avoid using fishing hooks with weed guards as much as possible. Too many times I’ve seen the guard hang up on the hooks barb and never release. When this happens the point is protected by the wire guard and can’t stick the fish. When fishing open water or hydrilla, I don’t use weed-less hooks. An open hook will pull easily through hydrilla without hanging up. Oh you may have to clean a little of the floating loose stuff off your hook every now and then but I would rather deal with this small aggravation than miss a fish…BIG FISH!Weedless hooks have a place and that’s when you're fishing pepper grass, cattails, reeds, kissimmee grass etc. If you anchor in an area or pull a grass line where you’ll be letting the shiner swim back into or along the edge of the cattails, reeds or any heavy vegetation, you must use a weedless hook.
Kahle Hook w/o weedguard 2/0 to 5/0
I use this fishing hook about 90% of the time. I use it over hydrilla patches in open water, free lining flats or when I’m anchored up and letting the shiner swim on a free line around open water hydrilla beds. As I said before, I feel the wire guard interferes with the hook point causing you to miss too many fish. As I said earlier I would rather deal with removing debris from the hook than take the chance of a customer losing a trophy fish because a weed guard got hung up on the barb and blocked the point from penetrating.
The Kahle hook is widely used by guides for shiner fishing, because of its wide bend it assures better hook ups and is ideal for lip hooking the shiner. Depending on the size of the shiner, you want to use the 3/0 to 6/0 size. The 6/0 is the preferred size for those really big slab shiners when you’re going for trophy sized fish.
Worm Hook wide gap w/ offset shank 3/0 to 4/0
This is the hook that I use for flippin’ a tube type bait, craw worm, brush hog or a large 9” to 10” worm. I also use it with a slugo or sassy shad type bait. Another words any bait that has a lot of bulk in the body I’ll use a wide gap style fishing hook.
Worm Hook w/ offset shank 2/0 to 4/0
Of all the worm hooks in my box this is my favorite. I’ve used these fishing hooks, in light wire, for fishing 4” finesse type worms out west in crystal clear lakes like Lake Mead to the stained water reservoirs in the southeast. I’ve used this fishing hook for everything from flippin’ to floating worms. I think, at one time or another, I’ve owned every size and wire weight from every manufacturer there is. On my page about pulling, I talked about catching one over ten with a small shiner and a light wire worm hook. Well this is the style fishing hook I was using.
Worm Hook straight shank 2/0 to 4/0
This is my primary hook for fishing a floating worm. You want the worm to be able to slide down the hook shank so when the fish clamps onto the worm, the hook will still move and make penetration. I usually fish the floating worm with an exposed hook for a greater chance of hooking up. Of course this all depends on the cover you’re fishing. If I’m casting towards shallow water vegetation like kissimmee grass, cattails or reeds I’ll rig it weedless. My favorite way of fishing the floating worm is over open water hydrilla beds with an exposed hook. Something I stumbled on by accident was throwing a 9” white floating worm with a 4/0 straight shank hook. In the season I discovered this, I boated 4 fish over 7 pounds and my brother and I finished 5th in a big tournament using this method.
Circle hooks 3/0 to 5/0
Circle hooks are designed for live bait fishing. They tend to hook the fish in the jaw with less chance of gut hooking the fish reducing the mortality rate. You do not set the hook as you would with a conventional fishing hook. This will result in pulling the hook right out of the fish’s mouth. The technique is to simply load the rod as the fish puts pressure on the line. This will result in the fishhook wrapping around the fish’s jaw as it exits his mouth. A lighter rod is recommended when fishing the circle style fishing hook since you are not setting the hook. With a heavy action rod, as the fish moves away with the bait, there is no gradual loading of the rod. The bait comes to an abrupt stop like it is tethered to a telephone pole and the bait pops out of the fish’s mouth leaving no chance for the hook to catch the fish’s jaw. With a lighter action rod the fish will feel a gradual increase in pressure like the bait trying to get away causing the fish to hold on longer giving the circle hook a chance to do its job and catch the jaw. This is a great technique for a novice or someone who doesn’t have the power needed for setting the hook. Circle style fishing hooks are even used in salt water when trolling for bill fish. The concept is, when they do get hooked up, they’re not coming off.
To wrap things up on fishing hooks, the main point you should take form this is the specialty hooks used for shiner fishing. The other hooks covered are those that you most likely have in your box and just need to double check your inventory before heading out for Florida. At the end of the day when the shiners are running low you may want to fish some artificial. Maybe after locating a good bunch of fish while searching with shiners you may decide to take a day or two and concentrate your efforts on something other than live bait. This page on fishing hooks is here to help you prepare your tackle check list of things to pack for a great Florida fishing adventure.
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