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Circle Hooks vs Octopus Hooks (Similarities and Differences)

At first glance, it may look like these two types of fishing hooks are the same. But take a closer look and you’ll find that there are some subtle differences which makes them unique styles of fishing hooks…each with it’s own set of benefits.

Here’s the difference between circle hooks and octopus hooks, as well as when you might want to consider using each one.

Circle Hook vs Octopus Hook

According to, “Octopus hooks come in both traditional and circle hook style. The difference between a conventional circle hook and an octopus circle hook is the bend of the eye. The difference between the traditional octopus hook and the circle octopus hook is the bend of the point of the hook.

Generally speaking, the circle style hooks don’t require a hookset and are pretty good at hooking fish in the mouth with live bait rigs.”

Below I’m going to take a little closer look at each of these types of fishing hooks.

Circle Hook

The main reason these hooks are called circle hooks is because of the circular shape that they take. Circle hooks are very popular anglers for a few different reasons.

First, circle hooks are excellent at hooking fish and overall increasing hooking success rates. In addition, circle hooks are generally known for not gut hooking fish.

When a fish takes the baited hook, the circle hook will typically slide out of the fish’s throat. And due to the design of the circle hook, the barb doesn’t penetrate the fish’s mouth until it comes in contact with the corner of the mouth.

Once the hook nestles into the corner of the mouth, it rotates and essentially sets itself, making it unnecessary for the angler to hard-set the hook like they would with other types of fishing hooks.

Octopus Hook

Octopus hooks are very similar to circle hooks in that they have a short-shank and have a circular, round shape to the bend. However, the bend of a octopus hook is generally not as drastic as a circle hook.

Upon close inspection of the Octopus hook, you’ll see that the point of the hook is directly facing the eye. This allows for near perfect hook sets regardless of whether you tie onto the hook with a standard fishing knot or tie onto the shaft of the hook with a snelled knot.

You’ll also notice that a significant difference between these two types of hooks is that octopus hooks feature an eye that’s bent backwards, in the opposite direction of the point. According to, “This is so that if you’re snelling the hook, the line can go straight down to the backside of the shank.”

Written by Don

When I'm not bass fishing or looking for steelhead in my home state of Oregon I can be found working on house projects dreaming of my next fishing adventure.

I started this website to share just some of the things I've learned along my fishing journey, and the many things I'm still learning. Enjoy!

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