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MinnesnowtaWild

Barbless Hooks?

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Just wondering how many of you big game fisherman are using barbless hooks. Today while Carp fishing, I had a Carp profusely bleeding everywhere and to make matters worse, the hook would NOT come out. I am using 5/0 Team Catfish circle hooks, and I have thought about eliminating the barbs on my hooks but have feared losing a real big fish.

So after I probably killed that Carp today, I flattened the barb and gave it a cast. I immediately had a very large fish on, presumably a large Carp, and after fighting it for a dozen seconds or so I lost the fish. I am used to 10-15 lb. Carp, and this thing was like none other. I am thinking it was near the 20 lb. range.

Needless to say, I was VERY upset that I decided to eliminate the barb on my hook. That's where I get my question...

Do any of you guys use barbless hooks? And if so, has your hookup rate been worse than before? Proper and safe Catch & Release is VERY important to me (even rough fish like Carp), and I am very confident that a barbless hook is much safer for the fish and easier to remove. However, I did lose a large fish today and it was probably because of the hook.

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Going barbless with a circle hook works fine if you're not using live or cut bait. Its hard to keep live bait or cut bait on the hook. Would probably work alright with worms or fishing dough bait for carp though. As far as fish coming off with a barbless circle hook, I think you'd be fine just as long as you keep a tight line.

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You must be a democrat. Don't over react to one bleeding carp. Cats and carp are tough, use a big, tough hook to catch them. Treat them with respect when you catch one doing a quick and safe catch, photo, and release doing as little harm as you can to the fish in the process.

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Carp and cats, especially cats, seem to have super sensitive mouths when it comes to bleeding. The slightest slip of a hook or anything remotely sharp too close to the pad of a cat and it seems like the bleed like a stuck hog.

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I have not been too impressed with my limited experience with barbless circle hooks for cats. I've tried it a few times and have had four fish hooked well and lost two of them. With barbed circle hooks I can only remember having one come off that seemed to be well hooked in the past three years.

However, in Manitoba barbless hooks are required and I've seen reports where they claimed there is no problem with barbless hooks. Maybe it is a learning thing, or perhaps barbless J hooks are better than barbless circle hooks. I like circle hooks, but am not too excited about giving them many more barbless tries.

There are a couple of things you can do to help hold on live bait with a barbless hook. If you cut a tiny piece of plastic (from a milk bottle or pop bottle) and slip it on the hook after the bait, it helps hold it on. Also, rubber bands can help hold on live bait and cut bait.

I did have good luck with barbless hooks for carp, but they were not circle hooks. I'd try it with carp first and get a little practice using barbless hooks.

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^ That is a good idea. I would be way too frustrated to try it if I lost a nice cat because of it. Carp on the other hand and it wouldn't be as bad.

I will be Carp fishing all day tomorrow and then getting some Chubs for dark, so I'll see how the barbless hook does with the Carp and go from there.

Thanks for the replies.

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