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hook size

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What sizes do you guys reccomend for channel cat I'm looking to trying to catch a few

Mac Attack:
I like GamakatsuŽ Octopus Circle Hooks in #2 size.

Since I switched to circle hooks I get far less kitties swallowing the hook.

i like a 2/0, but i stick with a regular octopus hook for a couple of reasons; the cats around here are only about 1-2 lbs on average, so the larger hook keeps them from swallowing it, also i'm usually too fast on the draw (not patient enough) so i almost always get them early in the bite rather than after they've been chewing it for a while. i'm gonna be heading for a place with bigger average cats here in a couple weeks, so i'll probably pick up a package of circles for when i'm out night fishing.

likepanfishman said, it really depends on what size fish you are targeting and what bait your using.

Most of my cat fishing is for big channels with big pieces of cut sucker.  i use 3/0 wide gap hooks for this (eagle claw L042).

the times I fish for smaller catfish, I like #2 or #4 eagle claw style 80 hooks.      Khale hooks in that size range work great for cats too.

that's another thing actually, and i'm glad you reminded me about it.

while the hook size is usually dependent on the size of the fish you're after, hook style is, at least for me, dependent on what bait you're using and the size of said bait.

my favorite bait, hands down, is fresh cutbait from local prey species. for me and my cat spot, that means small green sunfish or bluegills. thus, the octopus hook. the wide gap allows plenty of room for the point to clear the cutbait when setting the hook, even when using the heads of the really small 'gills.

whenever i fish with nightcrawlers, i love to go with a 1/4 oz. long-shank ballhead jig. when you get them cheap, the light wire will bend if you get snagged, rather than losing hooks over and over, because if i'm fishing with nightcrawlers, i'm looking for active fish or fish that will grab a bait that's dropped right in front of them. so, i'm basically flipping big gobs of nightcrawlers next to logs and under overhanging limbs. the jighead gives me that accuracy that the usual carolina rig wouldn't.

and, on the rare occasion that i use them, chicken livers are strictly treble-hook baits. whatever contraptions i've come up with; be it elastic thread, squares of nylon stockings, or a length of yarn, in my experience chicken livers just don't cooperate until they're combined with a treble hook. i really hate fishing them because they're messy, don't last long at all, and the necessity of a treble makes them ridiculously prone to snags. that said, if i'm fishing over a plain muck, sand, or gravel bottom, and bites are coming fast and furious, liver will do nicely and the treble will almost guarantee a hookup on swiping bites that may be missed by a single hook.

really, it all depends on your style of fishing and what you're comfortable with. i love fishing with cutbait because i spend a few hours catching sunfish, then fish them until i run out, lather, rinse, repeat. it's all fun, and i don't have to deal with keeping crawlers cool or cleaning up a nasty liver mess.

stink baits and paste baits aren't really available in my area, so i have no insight there.


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