Ultimate Guide To Sea Fishing Hooks (2022)

There are many sea fishing hooks to chose from, and these days, most are strong and chemically sharpened so you can be confident when you do hook a fish!

sea fishing hook guide

Using the correct hook size is important because if you opt for a hook that is too big, you may be missing some bites as the hook will be too big for the mouth of the fish.

On the other hand, if you choose a small hook, this could lead to a number of issues such as not setting the hook or it just not been strong enough for larger fish.

Our guide aims to teach all about sea fishing hook sizes, patterns and features so you can make a better judgement when deciding what sea fishing hook to use in your fishing.

1. The Design of Sea Fishing Hooks

Like any fishing hook, the features stay more or less the same.

We have created a diagram so you can see for yourself the make up of a sea fishing hook.

Sea Hook Features
  • The eye of the hook is used to thread and tie your sea fishing line through. Some hooks have smaller eyes to prevent damage to your bait, but larger hooks will often have a bigger eye to improve the strength when securing your line. Thee are less likely to bend or break, which would be bad!
  • Gape means the distance between the hook point and the shank. Large or wide gape hooks are often used by sea anglers to secure bigger baits to avoid obscuring the hook.
  • The hook shank is the long length of the hook opposite the point. These can vary in length (short and long) with some made easier when unhooking fish with small mouths, like a flatfish.
  • The most important part is the hook point as this is used to ‘penetrate’ the fishes mouth and provide a hook hold whilst you reel in your catch. Modern hooks are very sharp, but you should check every time you make a cast.
  • The barb part of the hook is designed to stop the hook from dislodging from the fishes mouth. The larger the barb, the better the grip, but this could severely damage the fish when the hook is removed.

2. What Size Sea Fishing Hooks Do I Use?

Sea fishing hooks use numbers. The higher the number, the smaller the hook.

Hook sizes are not meant to be complicated, although the addition of a slash can make things seem confusing.

Common sizes used in sea fishing range from a size 6 (smallest) to size 1 (biggest), however, there are EVEN BIGGER hook sizes that are used for species such as cod and bass, or for even larger fish like conger eels.


Once a size 1 hook is reached, this is where a slash is used to denote that its larger. So, where you see a /0 used on a packet of hooks, remember that this hook size is bigger than a size 1!

They are usually written like this: 1/0, 2/0, 3/0 and so on, up to a 12/0 which IS the largest sea fishing hook you can use!

Got it?

3. Matching Hook Size with Bait

But what size sea fishing hooks should be used with what baits?

We’ve put together a visual guide to help you improve your sea fishing watercraft below.

Hook & Bait Size Guide

4. Sea Fishing Hook Patterns

The ‘design’ of a sea fishing hook is defined as the pattern, and there are many!

Popular patterns include Aberdeen, Baitholder and Trebles.

You may find that hook manufacturers use their own patterns too.

4.1 Aberdeen Hooks

The Aberdeen hook is probably the most popular pattern amongst sea anglers, whether fishing from the shore, boat or kayak.

Aberdeen Hooks

But why is it so popular?

Firstly, its incredibly versatile and it stands out due to the long shank and distinctive squared but round bend and small eye.

Its available in a host of wire types (but usually a light wire) strengths and colours. Baits such as sandeels and worms can be applied easily due to the long shank making threading very simple and quick.

I like Aberdeen hooks because I find them easy to remove from the fishes mouth, usually with minimum damage.

4.2 Circle Hooks

Circle hooks are designed in such a way that when a fish takes your bait and moves off, it slides to the edge of the mouth and becomes securely hooked.

Because of this – there is no need to ‘strike’ your rod. Instead, simply reel in and let the hook work its magic!

Here are some circle hook examples:

4.3 Baitholder Hooks

A versatile hook pattern, the baitholder features two barbs on the shank making it perfectly suited to fishing with natural baits such as worms because they stay on the hook!

If you are new to sea fishing, then I can highly recommend starting off with this hook pattern.

Its great for not just worms, but insects and small fish baits too.

Here are some sample baitholder hooks:

4.5 Treble Hooks

Treble hooks are mostly used for fishing with lures such as crankbaits and spinners.

They can also be used with deadbaits too.

This type of sea fishing hook pattern is used for fast predators because they tend to strike your bait hard and quickly from different angles, and because a treble hook has three hooks, the chances of creating a good hook hold increase.

Here are some treble hooks:

If you are still unsure about what sea fishing hooks you should be using, this video may help explain this in more detail.

5. How to Tie a Sea Fishing Hook?

Because there are many sea fishing knots that can use to secure your hook, we have chosen to show you a video that explains how to tie the most common knots so you can fish confidently.


This is an informative blog post on how to choose the right sea fishing hook, and snood setup for your choice of rig.

It’s important for you to know which type of fish you’re targeting, as well as their size and habitat before choosing your bait.

I hope this article has given you some helpful insight into what kind of hooks are best for different types of fish!

Thanks for reading.

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Last update on 2022-07-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API