There are many ways to hook a shrimp. When you use a circle hook, the point turns in towards the shank, so it is a little harder for the shrimp to slide off the hook, plus there is a barb it would have to slide over and past. On the other hand, a J-Hook has the point running parallel to the shank, so it's a little easier for the shrimp to slide over the barb and off.
But there are a few things that will help your shrimp stay on the hook besides the way you hook them. Having a rod that loads well, and is in the slow-to-moderate action range, will help when casting. The tip on a slow-to-moderate action rod is softer, with a lot of forgiveness when you load your rod to cast. An extra-fast action rod will definately cause you to have more shrimp rip off the hook when casting. The extra-fast action rod is much stiffer at the tip, with less forgiveness.
The next thing is keeping your live shrimp in healthy and good condition. Crisp is what I like to say. Weak shrimp have a tendency to have their bodies get soft and mushy. They come off the hook very easily. A good baitwell pump and aerator is a must. In the summer when that water gets hot, keeping the baitwell temperature down will help keep the shrimp hearty and hard. Here's something else you should do with your baitwell if shrimp are in it: You should line the sides with a small mesh material. The shrimp will cling to it, and this will keep them from piling up on top of each other and suffocating.
The way I hook my shrimp is from the tail, from the bottom of the shrimp up through the top. I like to break the tail off and hook it around the first or second digit. (See photo). I save the tails until I get a few gathered up and I chum with them. When you hook the shrimp through the tail you will be able to cast it much further. When a shrimp sees a predator he will sharply twitch backwards, so it is also more of a natural presentation. This way of hooking your shrimp will also be a much more effective of way keeping them on your hook. By the way, they also make a double-hook device for shrimp, but I personally don't like it.
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Captain David M. Rieumont
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Captain David M Rieumont
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