Has anybody tried barbless hooks? I bought a hook cutter for the difficult jobs, but I was wondering how many fish I might lose using barbless hooks. Would there be any difference when fishing for different species?
I always for the most part go barbless. I feel i don't lose fish because of it. It's all skill level. Barbless is so much better. Here i'll tell you why. !. If you get the hook in your body or your buddies body you can take it out easily.. Now that's enough reason to do it. 2. It's so much easier to take the hook out of the fish. So many times i tip my rod and the fish come's right off allowing me to cast quick to catch another. 3. I think it penetrates deeper in the fish making the hook set better. 4. If you get the hook in your clothes or anything beside's fish it comes right out. To go barbless all you have to do is pinch it with the needle nose most of the time the barb breaks off. Sometimes it smashes in and that's the same thing as barbless. I'll take the new lure and i have to pinch the barb's just to have the peace of mind that if for what ever reason that hook gets in me it will come right out... I don't feel i lose that many fish from it, heck you lose them even with barbs... h2o
I use barbless hooks when I'm not fishing a tournament. It makes realese so much easier. The only exception is my hard baits with trebles. I don't have the patience to switch them out every time.
The only problem is you got to becarefull which hook you grab on tournament morning. I have lost a fish on the Grand River BFL doing just because I forgot to re-tie. I keep all my barbless jigs and hooks in the carpet of the my glovebox or deck of the boat. I only pinch them done when I need one, so there is never more than 1 or 2 floating around.
I have been pinching down the barbs on most of my hooks for about three years. It makes catch and release so much easier, which I follow 99% of the time. I also found that when fishing a multi hook bait, the "other" hook can get caught in the gills, or anywhere else, its the barb that causes all the damage to the fish. This is even more important when fishing with novices or kids, nothing turns off a kid to fishing more then watching you rip the guts out of that bluegill they just caught.
I always use barbed hooks, but that's partly because I don't do pure catch-and-release fishing. If I can catch enough edible fish I like to cook and eat them and as it stands I'm lucky if I catch more than 3-5 fish whenever I go fishing with barbed hooks anyways, much less 3-5 fish that are worth filleting or cleaning and cooking. Either I'm using the wrong bait or I'm fishing the wrong lake or the wrong part of the lake. It really sucks not having a boat with a fish finder sometimes. Anyways, that's my view on it.