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While I'm all for the conservation aspect, if the circle hooks only apply to bait fishing, that doesn't do much for all the bass taken on lures and artificials.

Also, I'm concerned that such a regulation could be used as a club to harass fishers when a bass is caught as a by-catch (like often happens in the spring when a bass takes a worm on a flounder hook).

I think the conservation effect/results of requiring circle hooks is marginal compared to the broader picture of the striper. I haven't studied any numbers, but it seems that it would be too much regulation for too little results in return.

Jaiem
ArtsNFlies.com
 

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I was curious and tried them one night with live bait. I had no problem hooking up with them. Unfortunately, out of the three bass I landed, two were gut-hooked to the point that I had to cut the hooks off. That turned me off from them and I never used them again. I do a lot of live eel casting and very rarely hook a fish deep with the 7/0 Gamakatsu Octopus hooks that I use. In those situations, I'm holding the rod and I set the hook very soon after the hit. After my bad experience with the circle hooks, I feel I'm much better off setting up quickly with a regular hook as opposed to giving the fish extra time with a circle. A charter captain friend of mine who fishes out east had the same gut-hooking problem when he tried them.
It is good though that the RFA recognizes that more needs to be done to bring big fish back to our waters. If they do push this measure through, I hope it has the intended effect.
 

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have to agree with surf-ed - circles are good maybe for inexperienced anglers but we fish with clambellies a lot and don't have a gut-hooking problem, but did when not manually setting the hook with circles. We also seemed to have more missed hook-ups with the circles. Getting the new de-hooker from RFA is a good way to be prepared just in case.
 

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I think it'd be a BS regulation.

First I wonder how do you really define a circle hook?

Then say you mange to define a circle hook.. I've got some offset circles in my tackle box that gut hook more often than not. Just let the fish swallow the bait and your odds of gut hooking are like 80%.

When I use non offset circles my gut hook ratio is still about the same.. only difference is when I do gut hook instead of leaving a regular coated or galvanized ferrous hook in the fish I'm leaving some hi-tech non-corroding alloy in the fish.

Anyway, 95% of my bass fishing is done with eels and I use little 3/0 or 4/0 J's. We set the hook and the gut hook ratio is low - lower than I see with any hook and live or dead 6 to 14 inch baitfish..

IMHO circle hooks are over-rated... there is no doubt in my mind you can run some sort of "test" that prooves their worth but my experience is there is nothing magical about them.

Jon
 

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its a totally BS stance.

I will make my own hooks ... Why don't we just ban any form of fishing that is not done like the "OTHER GUY" why is it always do it my way or no way mentality seeping into every facet of boating, fishing, and our lives.. If you want to define the rules so much there will be nothing left.

What about the fact I caught way more shorts that I can normally shake off with a j hook... and sometimes a extra long shank hook is preferable..

I will go now.. this is the last post I want to read tonight...

just when I get ready for the season and all the regs and this and that now I have to worry I do not fish with the right hook... little does it matter what hook I prefer..

lol

fagedaboudeit

realsurfin
 

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True Circle hooks,

and not wide gap circle hooks, 90% of the time will hook a fish in the lip.lets not confuse mutu's and semi circle's too.
I bait fish off of Stratford in 40 to 60 feet of water, I use a true circle hook, yes I miss a lot of fish ,but the fish I do catch are in the lip.I have never had a gut hooked fish using the circle hook H in the pic below.
Lets compare what people think are true circle hooks.

OF ALL THE HOOKS BELOW,
which hooks would you consider true cirlce hooks?
2)Which hooks are more likely to gut hook a fish.?

Circle hooks are hard to get use to, but they have their benifits.
I let the fish hook themselves, placing the rod in the rod holder, of course you can't do this on the beach or rocks unless you have a good sand spike or rock holder you can trust.

so lets see which hooks are true circles.your move.

(This post edited by JVBSR on 03/16/2006)
 

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JVBSR, to my knowledge there is no industry standard, nor any governing body, or organization that sets any criteria for hook types. Circle hooks can be described as any hook that is circular in nature with an "inward" point, meaning the hook point is pointed at the shank. They are generally short shanked hooks as well. Some are more circular then others. They need not be truely round in design. Some circle hooks you can put in your pants pocket without worry of snagging anything, other circular hooks you cannot. It is very subjective and left to the manufacturer to call the hook whatever type they choose.

That being said, all the hooks in your photo are circular, including, but just marginally in my opinion, letter F choice.

Circle hooks require very little skill on the anglers part. In fact, they work best when the rod is left alone, unattended. They are designed so that the fish takes the bait, swallows it, turns, and moves slowly away. The hook will then slide up through the fish and lodge itself in the corner of the mouth. This happens per Newton's second law of motion. They are the perfect hook for a longliner, in that the fish hooks itself, and you are likely to still have a very alive fish when returning to pick up your set. Circle hooks are not a "new technology" hook, they have been around forever, but they are quite the "craze" right now.

For the sport fisherman I believe they have their place, but the choice should be left to the angler. I think a lot of the fun in fishing involves setting the hook in the more traditional way.

MakoMatt

(This post edited by MakoMatt on 03/16/2006)
 

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I agree that to some degree with what you say, but the first circle hooks were very closed gap hooks, point turned in. These hooks took on some modifications as hooks ups were not quite as good as expected,percentage was down to 80% not that that is bad.anglers who use J hooks found it hard not to try and set the hook causing even more pulled hooks.
I agree that left alone they work their magic,thats why I leave the pole in the holder, even when I'm chunking for tuna.I use bait hooks when flat lining, gorilla for sure.
But the circle hook has changed since it's first appearance,and with wide gap, mutu's and such I personaly do not consider them true circle hooks JMO.
 

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Interesting discussion on what is a "true" circle hook. My surf buddies have found the same problem as other using "circle" hooks - many more gut hooked fish, and more missed fish. If a law was made regarding the exclusive use of circles I think we would also need a legal definition on a circle hook. I wonder about where the perception that all circle hooks are somehow safer that j hooks really comes from. To my knowledge there has not been a study done on how the different styles of circle hooks stack up against each other. I almost feel that RFA would do more good by conducting a study of which hooks (models, sizes) are the safest and distributing it in tackle stores, rather than pushing for a law that might ultimately result in little or no benefit to the fish and just waste the energy and time of law enforcement.
 

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We need to get our facts straight. FIVE years ago, that's right, FIVE year ago, the RFA did FLIRT with the idea of suggesting manditory use of circle hooks on the Delaware river for spring stripper fishing. The state of NJ did propose to make it manditory to use circle hooks for that spring fishery. NJ, via regulation did institute the mandatory use of circle hooks for the spring bass fishery, when fishing bait, and if fact that regulation still exists today, and Maryland has instituded the same regulation for the Susquehana Flats for thier spring bass fishery. The RFA did not propose the regulations, but we do support them.
The RFA does support the use of circle hooks whenever possible, but, by no means are we backing a new regulation to make them manditory any where else at this time. We are looking at the long term impact of circle hook use as a possible means to decrease released fish mortality. But, there are way to many issues around the use of circle hooks everywhere to make their use manditory.
This subject is old news, from five years ago, and the RFA has made no new suggestions on the use of circle hooks since then. If you do a web search on this topic, you will see it come up, but you will also see that it is from 2001. People should do full research before making bold claims.

I guess it must be April fools day already!!!

Mark Molitor
Co-Chair, NY RFA

(This post edited by bassman909 on 03/16/2006)
 

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I personally like circle hooks for floating clam bellies or bunker chunks going after stripers or big blues....and as someone noted, the best way to do that is to just leave the rod be and let the fish hook itself....

but as MM also said, this takes half the fun out of fishing...

plus, i've tried circle hooks for fluke, and i personally can't fight the instinct to set the hook myself when i feel the hit...and i personally couldn't see using the circles for tog, porgies, or seabass at all...gettin the hook set in time, at the right time when doin that kinda fishing is definitely half the fun, if not more...but that could just be me too...

i do definitely agree that someone, somewhere has their priorities all kindsa messed up if they're lobbying for this kinda law...plus it seems to me that it'd be a great way to virtually shut down fishing without shutting down the fisheries....not that i'm anti-conservation, i'm far from it....but it seems like this would take an awful lot of fun out of the sport, and why do something if it's not fun?
 

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bassman909 wrote:

The RFA does support the use of circle hooks whenever possible, but, by no means are we backing a new regulation to make them manditory any where else at this time. We are looking at the long term impact of circle hook use as a possible means to decrease released fish mortality. But, there are way to many issues around the use of circle hooks everywhere to make their use manditory.



Thanks for clearing this up Mark. When I saw this thread, it was news to me as well, and my search at the RFA site found nothing to support this claim.
 

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bassman909, sinkerbouncer and all:

I was equally taken back by the BOGUS title and implications of this thread, so I went to the source.

In response to my query, Jim Donofrio stated that "we are opposed to mandatory use of circle hooks and that is on the record in our comments to Hogarth on the HMS plan."

That should settle this issue.

Mischaracterizations like this are NOT APPRECIATED -

TO ALL OF YOU BUDDING "INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISTS" OUT THERE ("bigjack" - WHOEVER you are...but I have pretty good idea...)

DO YOUR RESEARCH BEFORE MAKING UNSUPPORTED COMMENTS.

(This post edited by sealaw on 03/17/2006)
 

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MakoMatt wrote:
sealaw, thank you. Can you state for the record that the RFA is in no way looking into the issue of mandatory use of circle hooks???

MakoMatt

MM,

My last post stated:

"In response to my query, Jim Donofrio stated that 'we are opposed to mandatory use of circle hooks and that is on the record in our comments to Hogarth on the HMS plan.'

This is a direct quote from the Exec. Director of RFA, less than 12 hours old. That should be enough of a record for anyone.

(This post edited by sealaw on 03/17/2006)
 
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