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Fish Welfare


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Hi All,


I started Angling last season (summer 2010) so am still learning the ropes.


I came across a thread on death rigs and was quite concerned.

As a beginner I have been glued to forums such as this and have discovered how to make the basic hair rig. I have my Hook length tied to a swivel on my main line (both hook length and main line were 10lb mono as I had not discovered braid).


A perfectly basic rig I thought. The concern I had is that although my rig seemed fish friendly enough, every fish I caught kept taking the hook deep in its mouth. Deep enough that I could not get the hook out. I even troubled some more experience anglers around the lake to see if they could get it out.


With no luck and some blood coming from the fish, another angler told me to cut the line as close to the hook as possible leave the hook in a put the fish back.


Obviously my main concern is fish welfare, so my question is, does anything seem wrong with my rig and in the event this happens again is this the best thing to do if I cannot get the hook out.


Thanks :lol:

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you'll defo need to invest in a pair of long nosed forceps, as long as you keep the fish wet, you'll have a few seconds to get the hook out.


personally i have never had a carp being hooked too deep to remove the hook


the only other thing i can think is to use a slightly larger bait so the fish cant swallow it so deeply or alternatively use a shorter hooklength so the hook point will be buired before it goes down the throat.

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Forceps are on order.


My rigs vary in size but i try to keep them no longer than a foot long. Usually shoter.


Bigger bait may be the answer although will this affect my catch rate? Ive heard that less is more sometimes. I generally use medium size boilies or lunchen meat cut to a similar size as a boilie.


How far would you recommend the bait being from the hook? Could this be a factor? I usually go about 1-2mm.


Cheers Guys

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bait should be a little further from the hook for a standard hair rig really, although I have used hairs as short as you are using, and still never deep hooked a carp.


what size hooks are you using? with a smaller hook, maybe a disgorger would be better than forceps, although I have never tried using a disgorger on a knotless knotted hook - never had to! seems very strange.

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Jay, I've only just found this thread and my thinking is along the lines of others.


Firstly, if you want to use hairs as short as you are I'd suggest good sized hooks and baits.


Conversely, if you want to use smaller baits try hairs giving around 10-12mm space between hook and bait.


I've caught good fish on waters considered to be hard simply by using hairs tied much longer than I'd usually tie. As much as 30mm at times.


Experiment, it's the way forward as nothing in fishing is cast in stone.


Oh, welcome to this cracking forum, by the way.



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Your rigs aren't balanced enough which, in general, means what a lot of people have said here is true. weight and balance is all off. mono is soft and flexible, with a light bait and a long hook link over say gravel or other hard lake beds means that when your rig has curled up over the bottom the carp is sucking in the hook and moving at least 1-2ft before you even get an indication. At this stage the carp is already nailed and any over eager 'strike' is simply putting that hook in solid. Have you ever been 'bitten off' by a carp? If so, read about Chris Yates and his exploits with the kidney bean bait...


If you want to use mono, shorten 'em up, foam the hook and drag it all back towards you 5 seconds after the lead has hit the bottom. Consider a heavier guage dead sharp hook like Kordas wide gape if the water is not too crystal. Whatever you do, make sure you learn from it by changing little bits at a time and you're more than halfway past cracking the mechanics! keep the klinik nearby and don't panic when they're on the bank


tight lines! Safe angling!

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