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Carp-fisher

Any tips to get a bullhead to NOT swallow the hook?

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I've tried jigheads, big hooks, and setting the hook at the slightest line twitch, but 99% of bullheads I catch have swallowed the hook. I've tried bobbers, but my catch rate drops off significantly. I've been using worms...so perhaps there is a bait that they don't engulf so quickly???

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I use a lindy rig with a phelps floater, 1/4oz weight, and a 6 inch leader to keep the bait near the bottom, but just off of it. Never had one take the hook in the gullet. Gulp waxies work for bait, but real worms usually work best.

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Try leeches, and use a small circle hook. seems they usually get it in the corner of the mouth! Otherwise you could try snipping the barb off your hook. Than if they do happen to swallow it, it will be easier to get out and wont tear the fish apart. Down fault is you might lose a fish from time to time.

Nick

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using jigheads helps

using bigger hooks doed as well, a size 2 is small enough for most bullheads to get in their mouths. but to big for them to swallow.

size 4s would be good too.

having most of the bait trailing off th hook helps as well

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Wow thanks for all the tips. I'll definitely try bigger jigheads and circle hooks. Last week I caught a bunch using long shank hooks (but no barb pinch), and I tried to carefully remove the hook from several gullet hooked fish, but they were dead by the next day. For all the rest, I just snipped the line and tied on a new hook each time. I've gone through more than 60 hooks now, so somethings gotta change.....

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I think you should try using the bobber again if 90% of your fish are throat hooked, that or make sure you keep a tight line to feel those fish right when they take the bait.

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Or, a larger hook with a large egg sinker pegged right next to the hook. It would be a lot cheaper to cut off plain hooks instead of jigheads.

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What Brozeback says; use the bobber set it right close if not on the bottom and use barbless jig. You see that bobber tip over or start to go under set the hook. Not foolproof but should diminish mortality greatly.

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If you get a bullhead with a hook deep in the throat, I have found going threw the gills to remove the hook with a bait removing forceps helps keep the trauma level down big time. Most times the hook comes right out, no bleeding and they live.

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A circle hook is the only real defense to gut hooking. I recommend a wide gap fine wire circle like a Muto light, Eagle Claw light, or a Gami light for Bullheads. A 1/0 should be sufficient, but depending on the manufacturer it may require a 2/0 hook.

It is critical to avoid filling the gap of the hook to the point it can not do it's intended job. Basically a gut-hook proof rig.

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i would go with a lighter action rod, size 4 walleye circle hooks from walmart, corn, and a egg sinker with a swivel they seem to not gut it and the hooks are like $.90 for 30 and if they do gut it cut the line they'll work it out and then you get it back anyways just look in the bottom of your bucket before you dump you water out

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