A Simple Guide to the Most Popular Fish Hook Styles

Posted by  Thursday, July 10 2014 4:00 pm
expert

While there are lots of specialty hooks available, a handful of select fish hook styles do the brunt of the work for most fishing presentations. Bait, circle, treble, and worms hooks are a few examples. The following is a primer on popular fish hooks and some of their applications.

Popular Hook Styles

With a good understanding of hook components, let's look at basic and advanced hooks to add to your tackle box.

Bait Hooks     

Bait hooks come in a variety of styles and are the white-bread option of hooks. Most feature barbs on the shaft to hold bait in place. Longer shank hooks are good for teaching kids to fish, while shorter shank ones are often used in snells.

FishingHookBG Bait

Circle Hooks     

Circle hooks have a pronounced circular bend, short shank and an inward bending point. Many fish will swallow bait, resulting in gut hooking with conventional live bait hooks. Circle hooks act differently. When an angler detects a bite, a slow steady pull of the line is all that's needed to move the hook to the side or top of the fish's mouth to prevent gut hooking. This style of hook is an excellent choice for bait fishing and catch and release practices.

FishingHookBG circle

Treble Hooks

Treble hooks feature three bends and points in one hook. Trebles provide greater coverage for artificial baits such as crankbaits, jerkbaits or topwaters. Bait anglers also use trebles. Cut bait for catfish or threading minnows for trolling salmon or trout are examples where trebles are regularly used.

FishingHookBG Treble

Siwash Hooks

Siwash hooks have a long shank and a straight eye to ensure they sit properly on lures. Siwash hooks are often used on single-hook baits, such as spinnerbaits. They're also an excellent alternative to factory-provided treble hooks on spoons and other baits. These hooks are handy to replace treble hooks on hard-baits when fishing a zone that limit hook points on a per lure.

FishingHookBG Siwash

Aberdeen Hooks

Aberdeen hooks are composed of a lighter wire than Siwash hooks and are often used for bait fishing. The thin metal easily hooks bait with minimal damage so it stays lively. Light wire also makes them a good option when fishing timber for crappie. When snagged, you can sometimes bend the hook and pull it free with a bit of pressure.

FishingHookBG aberdeen

Octopus Hooks

Octopus hooks are short-shank hooks that feature a round shank and bend, but it's not as dramatic as circle hooks. Octopus hooks are often used for bait fishing when minimal hook weight and size is essential for a natural presentation. These hooks are great for hooking a leech through the sucker. A mosquito hook is a variation on this style.

FishingHookBG octopus

Worm Hooks

A variety of worm hooks exist to fish soft-plastic baits. Worm hooks feature a slight bend just below the hook eye for Texas-rigging plastics to make them weedless. Most worm hooks feature wide gaps to ensure adequate clearance for the point to penetrate a fish's yap when setting the hook with a bulky plastic offering. These hooks are quite strong and feature solid penetrating power to hook fish.

FishingHookBG worm

Jig Hooks

Jig hooks are designed to sit in specific jig molds. They feature a bend just below the hook eye, with 90-degrees being the most common. Pouring your own jigs can save you money and be a fun winter hobby to gear up for the next season.

FishingHookBG Jig

You may not need all of the popular hooks listed above, but odds are good that there are a few styles or sizes that would be welcomed additions to your tackle box. From everyday rigging methods, to lure modifications, to DIY fishing projects — these hooks are essential items for many anglers. Take an inventory of what you're missing and stock-up so you're well outfitted and ready to fish.

Also Read: A Guide to Specialty Fish Hooks and How to Use Them | Understanding the Anatomy of a Fishing Hook

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Last modified on Thursday, July 17 2014 3:30 pm
Tim Allard
expert

Tim Allard hails from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. He's a full-time outdoor journalist and author and photographer of the multi-award winning book, "Ice Fishing - The Ultimate Guide" (2010), which is also available in French under the title, "Pêche sur glace". Tim regularly contributs to numerous North American print and online publications. For more information visit www.timallard.ca.

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