I‘m a liberal leaning outdoorsman attempting to open the minds of right wingers to the idea that libs fish too. Anglers come from all walks of life, left, right, and center. Not everyone who fishes for bass is a redneck fond of Nascar, country music, and religiosity. Expect posts about largemouth bass fishing, techniques, reviews of lures and other products, but not any condemnable conservative rants. I hope to inspire the online angler community to dial down rhetoric which will do more harm than good to our sport.

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Saturday, August 11, 2007

• Hemostats

Hemostats are almost perfect when used as fishing pliers. You can buy hemostats in a lot of fishing equipment sections these days. KMart is the one store that consistently seems to keep hemostats in stock. You can also find them at a few stores that sell medical supplies. Hemostats are my tool of choice for removing fish hooks. I especially like my pair with a curved end as well as a longer straight pair.

These tools tend to do the best job for fish hook removal, especially fish with tiny mouths, but they come in handy for other fish too. I tend to catch catfish by accident on crankbaits. A treble hook in a catfish mouth is a royal pain because most of the time, I hook both the top and bottom lips which locks their jaw in place. You can't get a good pair of pliers in there. Whenever I hook a bass deeper than desired, a pair of hemostats do the trick, especially if you choose to go through the gills to attempt a gut hook removal. They are also more compact than the big gripping tools you may see in stores.

Above is a photo showing how to hold them. Take it from me, I use them to suture too. ;) Notice the placement of each finger. Your thumb and ring finger go through the holes. Your middle finger supports from underneath and your index finger steadies it on the side which is essential. You may not get the same amount of leverage as you might with a solid pair of pliers, but I still feel hemostats are the best tool for the job if used properly.