Richard_the_Aughth

Gut hooking a fish

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So I was fishing a beach Saturday night for stripers. We were using 6/0 octopus circle hooks, and 3 out of 4 fish were beautifully hooked in the corner of the mouth, just like circle hooks are supposed to work. However one of then was hooked in the gut, and I quickly determined I could not get the hook out, so I did what I was always told to do and cut the line as close to the hook as I could and quickly released it. I've always been told to do this on a gut hooked fish because the hook will just rust out in a few days and the fish will live. Does anyone know if this is actually true? Or is it just an old wives tale to make people feel better about gut hooking a fish?

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3 mins ago, Richard_the_Aughth said:

So I was fishing a beach Saturday night for stripers. We were using 6/0 octopus circle hooks, and 3 out of 4 fish were beautifully hooked in the corner of the mouth, just like circle hooks are supposed to work. However one of then was hooked in the gut, and I quickly determined I could not get the hook out, so I did what I was always told to do and cut the line as close to the hook as I could and quickly released it. I've always been told to do this on a gut hooked fish because the hook will just rust out in a few days and the fish will live. Does anyone know if this is actually true? Or is it just an old wives tale to make people feel better about gut hooking a fish?

That's what I heard and will do. Regardless if they do rust out or not, seems to be the best way to let the fish go instead of damaging it more if you tried to get it out.

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14 mins ago, foxfai said:

That's what I heard and will do. Regardless if they do rust out or not, seems to be the best way to let the fish go instead of damaging it more if you tried to get it out.

Yea I agree that's what you should do as well and just let it go but I'm curious if the hook actually rusts out

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Stomach acids will dissolve the hook a lot faster than salt water.  Never use stainless steel hooks unless absolutely necessary (eel skin jigs stored in salt) because they are almost impervious to stomach acids and salt water corrosion and losing a SS hook in a fish is almost a guaranteed death sentence........

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Posted (edited) · Report post

59 mins ago, Richard_the_Aughth said:

Yea I agree that's what you should do as well 

I'm pretty sure that cutting the line near the hook has a higher survival rate than some random fisherman twisting & pulling the hook, creating more damage, in order to get the hook out. 

 

I carry long needlenose pliers in my saltwater bag so I can quickly unhook a deep hooked fish. I have forceps in my freshwater bag for the same reason.

Edited by zak-striper

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20 mins ago, zak-striper said:

I'm pretty sure that cutting the line near the hook has a higher survival rate than some random fisherman twisting & pulling the hook, creating more damage, in order to get the hook out. 

 

I carry long needlenose pliers in my saltwater bag so I can quickly unhook a deep hooked fish. I have forceps in my freshwater bag for the same reason.

Yea I bought some for shark fishing myself. I guess it's time to throw them in the daily tackle bag

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1 hour ago, Richard_the_Aughth said:

So I was fishing a beach Saturday night for stripers. We were using 6/0 octopus circle hooks, and 3 out of 4 fish were beautifully hooked in the corner of the mouth, just like circle hooks are supposed to work. However one of then was hooked in the gut, and I quickly determined I could not get the hook out, so I did what I was always told to do and cut the line as close to the hook as I could and quickly released it. I've always been told to do this on a gut hooked fish because the hook will just rust out in a few days and the fish will live. Does anyone know if this is actually true? Or is it just an old wives tale to make people feel better about gut hooking a fish?

Look at it this way---its chances of making it are better than they would be if you put it in a cooler. Even if it's 10%, it beats 0%.

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9 mins ago, Ditch Jigger said:

Look at it this way---its chances of making it are better than they would be if you put it in a cooler. Even if it's 10%, it beats 0%.

Yup that works and no bait does too. It can happen with lures too but no as much. Taking off trebles and replacing with inline helps a lot especially with today's fishing regs when most fish have/should be released. On a side note it is a lot easier on yourself and safer to release without trebles. C &R will be come more common with almost species for sure.





 

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Posted (edited) · Report post

I’ve caught numerous live fish from cod to stripers to bass and trout with hooks in them. All were active feeders despite having swallowed a hook.

Edited by Running Ape

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I’ve caught a couple freshwater bass that had line sticking out of their ass. I was able to slowly pull it out with a hook on the other end. So i guess it’s possible it may pass it.

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You did the right thing.

 

The Octopus Circles have an offset shank, and therefore have a higher percentage for  gut hooking fish.  Also, I don't believe they meet the circle hook regulation.

 

Search out some true inline circles and the gut hooking ratio will go way down.  Gama, VMC and Owner all make good ones.

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1 hour ago, MikeK said:

You did the right thing.

 

The Octopus Circles have an offset shank, and therefore have a higher percentage for  gut hooking fish.  Also, I don't believe they meet the circle hook regulation.

 

Search out some true inline circles and the gut hooking ratio will go way down.  Gama, VMC and Owner all make good ones.

I thought Octopus just means there is a bend just below the eye (for snell knots), not that the hook itself is offset? So you could have an octopus circle hook that is either inline or offset. 

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The standard Octopus Circle is offset.  They make a inline Octopus circle that says inline on the label.  Used to be much harder to find then the standard octo circle, but hopefully that has changed with the new regulatuons

 

I personally had better hookup success and less gut hooking with the VMC inline circles.

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