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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok heres the deal...Ive been out the last 2 nites fishing for flatheads...Friday nite I get a good run, set the hook, and fight the fish to the net, I see the fish 2 or 3 times, It was between 15-20lbs, My buddy scooped and missed the fish, it ran and when I turned it it threw the hook..After that I get a great run on bullhead, I let it run a good 8-10yrds and then lay into it...Fight the fish til its about 2ft from the bank and it throws the hook, the bullhead is still there...

Fast Forward to last nite...I get a great run on Bullhead, I let the fish run even longer than the one the night before. I set the hook, start reeling and set the hook again, I get the fish about 2-3ft from the bank and it throws the hook, the bullhead is still there...After this I set the hook on a small flathead, nothing there, so I reel down and set the hook again, finally i feel a pull back, ended up landing a flathead about 4-4.5lbs...After I get the fish in the net the hook comes out of the fish in the net...

SO...My question is, WHY are these fish not getting hooked up good??? Im useing creek chubs 5-8in long, and bullhead 7-10in long, useing 5/0 Gamma and Eagle Claw Octopus hooks, and 7/0 Gamma Oct Hooks...

Can anyone shine any light on this for me???????
 

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MOD SQUAD
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it could be you're not letting them get the bait turned and into their mouth.they have a habit of grabbing the bait and moving off,then stopping to mash it,turn it around and take it in head first to swallow it.i always wait for that second run unless they don't stop within a reasonable time,because they sometimes will just inhale it and go.
 

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Eat Em Up Charters
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I hardly ever let a fish run, when it picks up the bait I hit it. I had a problem using the Gama 4X strong hooks, I think they were just too thick of a hook. I switched to the Gamma Oct. hooks and they worked better for me.

How do you hook your bullheads? Through the mouth or through the back by the tail? A friend of mine had a problem with getting a good hook up with bullheads. He hooked them through the jaw and was not getting a lot of hook into the fish. He switched to hooking them in the back by the tail like I do and has done better. This allows the hook to pull free from the bullhead or the bullhead will slide up the line leaving all of the hook to go into the fish's mouth.
 

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I would make sure your hooks are realy sharp. It realy does make a big difference. How you hooking your baits? I use to hook mine right bellow the dorsal fin but was missing too manny fish and fish coming off the hook. I found out after awhile that my hook was turnning back into the bait when i set the hook and that ment i had to set the hook hard enough to go through the bait agin and then into the flatheads mouth. I started hooking my bait in the tail and have had very few misses and no fish has came off this. Other than that i would say your doin everything else textbook. Are you droppin lines? If so you should realy let the line get tight and run back a few yards before you set the hook. Runnin lines out a hundred yards has alot of stretch so you got to get the stretch out before you set the hook.
 

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first of all, make sure the spines on the bullheads are cut off. i learned that when threatened they will lock those spines in place and it will prevent a good hookset. other than that the fact that the bait is still there tells me the fish may be running towards you when you jerk or your line isnt tight enough and or your just not jerking hard enough. are your hooks the "octopus" style with the turned back eye and if so are you snelling them or just tying them on? those "octo" style hooks SUCK at hook ups when not snelled. if the current is flowing back towards you, like in an eddy, the fish may be running towards you which is not good for hooksets. in that situation a circle hook will do no good. make sure you have plentty of hook point showing!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
No way I will EVER use circle hooks again...I am setting the hook plenty hard enough I know that...Im hooking the bullheads thru the mouth...I use the oct gama hooks and tie the polymer knot...Up until Friday night I have not lost a fish but lost 3 fish in two days...I know my hooks are sharp they are right out of the pack and I check them anyways...

I know the flathead that I did land ended up swimming towards me and I had to set the hook 2x...I think hooking the bait closer to the tail may be a solution...Thanks for the advice guys! :G
 

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Tuscarawas River Angler
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i like the Mustad Demon Circle Hooks in the 5/0 to 7/0 size range...............i WAS using the Gamakatsu Octopus Circle Hooks and was missing way too many fish on them so i tried the Mustads and i will NEVER go back to the Gamakatsus again !!!

i think most times when you and i miss fish Chuck it is simply because the fish doesnt have the bait far enough into its mouth to get hooked...........just my opinion of course ;)
 

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circle hooks are great for channels but i will never use em for flats. gamakatsu octo 8/0 to 10/0 depending on bait size for flats.
 

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Wurlds Wurst Spellor
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Sounds to me like you are not letting the line tighten up enough before setting the hook. If you are using mono you have huge "give" factor so you have to compensate for that.
It could also be that the hook has turned back into the bait fish and not enough is sticking out to get a good hook set. I've had it happen.

Or you could be doing stuff right and ran into a back to back run of bad luck!
 

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It swims its bait
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circle hooks are great for channels but i will never use em for flats. gamakatsu octo 8/0 to 10/0 depending on bait size for flats.

i have to agree with ducky here, i use the gam 8-10/0 and they havent failed me yet. whats the depth of the water your fishing, ive noticed with my 7ft rods setting hook in deeper water i dont always get the best hook set
 
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