10 Best Octopus Hooks + Buying Guide


Many fishing brands have spent a considerable amount of time developing certain types of new, specialized hooks in the last decade. The circle hook has exponentially grown in popularity as it allows anglers to exercise more caution and give released fish a greater chance at surviving a catch with less potential for injury. The octopus hook is another specialty hook style that is also growing in status among experienced and professional anglers as well. 

The octopus hook is one of the newer styles of speciality hooks available in the fishing industry and many anglers are largely unfamiliar with them. These hooks bear certain similarities to the circle hooks, as well as the j-hooks that are commonly used by anglers in a variety of scenarios. 

If you’re hoping to learn more about the octopus hook and how it compares to other hook styles, as well as when and where you might want to use this hook, we’ve compiled this article to help explain some of the finer points related to octopus hooks. 

Octopus Hook Buying Guide

What is an Octopus Hook?

For the most part, octopus hooks look very similar to circle hooks in the way the hook is curved and the fact that it features a smaller barb on the end than most other types of specialty hooks. The main difference between an octopus hook and a circle hook or even a j-hook is the fact that the eye is bent backwards at a sharp angle instead of being situated in a more straight-up-and-down orientation. 

This bent-back angle is where the octopus hook derives its name from. It’s called an octopus hook simply because the eye and its orientation to the hook and barb seem to vaguely resemble an octopus, which typically has its head cocked back at an angle from its long, curved arm. 

The overall purpose of the octopus hook is to function much like a regular circle hook in relation to how the hook is embedded into a fish’s mouth and also how it is capable of maintaining that hookset without the fish getting free. The only major difference in the octopus hook and the circle hook is the angle at which the eye is set, which allows an angler to more easily ‘snell’ their hook with their fishing line if they want. 

Snelling a hook basically means tying the knot of your fishing line onto the hook in a way that lets you easily use it as a leader line. Octopus hooks, with their angled eyelets, are much easier to snell and can serve as an adequate leader line and hook that can be used in a variety of different rigs. 

Some anglers choose to tie their knot directly to the eye of the octopus hook in some cases. There isn’t anything wrong with doing this and it usually functions virtually the same as a typical circle hook might in such instances. 

The tip or point of the hook is actually bent in such a way that it is positioned at the same angle as the eye, in relation to the curvature of the hook itself. Some anglers have posited that this might interfere with your ability to get a solid hookset, but this method and the octopus hook is still capable of providing you with an adequate hookset because you’re pulling the hook in the same direction that the eye and the line is oriented. 

In fact, if the hook was not angled in such a way as to match the angle of the eye, there would be much greater potential for having a poor hookset. A quick inspection of how the hook orients itself when pressure is applied from the line will show that the purpose of having the hook angled in such a way is to make sure it allows for a decent hookset. 

When to use Octopus Hooks?

For most anglers, octopus hooks are best used with live or natural bait in either freshwater or saltwater fishing scenarios. You are free to use the octopus hook as a snelled hook with a leader line, but it functions quite well when the line is tied directly to the eye. This allows you to hook your bait in certain ways that helps with the overall bait presentation underwater, as well as with the hookset you’ll be able to get using these types of baits. 

The most common baits used with an octopus hook in which the line has been tied directly to the eye are usually minnows, worms, or even leeches. The overall design of this type of hook makes it a great choice for anglers who are looking to hook larger-sized fish. The fact that the hook is designed with a short shank and a wide, sweeping gap between the shank and the actual hook and barb makes it perfect for getting good hooksets on bigger fish. 

Anglers most commonly use octopus hooks with live minnows because they are able to run the hook through the mouth and head portion of the minnow. By doing this, you allow the minnow’s tail and the rest of its body to be free, which helps add to the overall action and movement of the minnow. 

Put simply, the octopus hook allows a minnow and any other long, slender bait to have the ability to move around and flutter freely in the water. If the minnow is alive, any movement of its body and tail will be unobstructed by the hook, which will help attract predators to bite. If the minnow is dead, the angler can simply twitch their line to create the type of movement needed to entice most fish to bite. 

How to Choose the Right Size Octopus Hook

Like any other type of fishing tackle and equipment, purchasing a good quality octopus hook will usually require spending a bit of extra money than you might expect. There are some more affordable brands out there that produce cheaper octopus hooks, but the more prestigious brands will cost a bit more. It’s usually worth the investment to spend the extra money and be assured that you have a hook that’s capable of withstanding the rigors of handling the species of fish you’re planning to go after. 

Most anglers use octopus hooks that are a bit smaller and lighter than other types of hooks to create a more natural-looking bait presentation. With a smaller and more lightweight type of hook, you’re able to get a higher amount of action out of the particular type of bait you’re using. 

There are a wide variety of different size octopus hooks that are usually indicated using the typical # format or the standard 1/0 method of distinguishing hook sizes. Picking the right size is crucial to your overall success as having a hook that’s too small will almost always result in less hookups. If you use a hook that’s large enough for the type of fish you’re going after, you can usually rest assured you will have an excellent chance of landing your catch. 

You can also purchase octopus hooks in a variety of different colors as well. Some anglers like to use a painted or even colored metallic type of octopus hook to further add to the bait presentation. Having a red hook sometimes helps catch the eye of certain types of fish that are more visually aware than others. 

Top Brands 

When it comes to some of the best brands that manufacture octopus hooks, you should look at the usual suspects who are at the top of the game in the fishing industry. Gamakatsu is one that many expert anglers turn to for specialty hooks as they are quality-made and will usually stand up to nearly anything on the water. 

If you’re looking for a brand that’s a bit more affordable, however, Bass Pro Shops’ XPS Octopus hooks are one that will usually get the job done. For anglers who might be looking for premium-quality hooks, brands like Mustad and Matzuo are among the most popular with guides and pros across the world. 

Make sure you select a chemically sharpened hook to improve your strike rate.

10 Best Octopus Hooks

ON SALE $3.60 OFFBestseller No. 1
Gamakatsu Octopus NS Black Hook Size 4/0 25 Per Pack
  • Sport Type: Outdoor Lifestyle
  • Closed eye
  • Forged steel
Bestseller No. 2
Gamakatsu Octopus Hooks, 1/0, Red
  • Type of Hook: All Purpose
  • Size: 1
  • Color: Red
ON SALE $3.90 OFFBestseller No. 3
BATDIYOW Circle Hooks Saltwater Octopus Fishing Hooks Sport Customized Offset Octopus Hooks Black...
  • The circle hooks eye is clearly precision bent into a perfect round smooth circle, Easier to get out...
  • Strong high carbon steel hooks without bending easily and avoid escaping and lowers fish mortality....
  • Saltwater/Freshwater Fishing hooks, for large / small mouth bass, stripers, hybrids, crappie,...
ON SALE $2.56 OFFBestseller No. 4
Gamakatsu Circle Offset Point Octopus Hook-Pack Of 25 (Black, 2/0)
  • Crafted from the highest quality material ensuring quality and durability
  • Size 2/0, Circle, Offset Point, NS Black, Per 25
  • Made in the U.S.A.
ON SALE $2.00 OFFBestseller No. 5
Gamakatsu Octopus Red Hook Size 1 25 Per Pack
  • Significantly increase you chances of Landing the catch
  • Made environmentally friendly
  • Used by professional anglers worldwide
Bestseller No. 6
Gamakatsu Octopus NS Black Hook Size 4/0 100 Per Pack
  • Significantly increase you chances of Landing the catch
  • Made environmentally friendly
  • Used by professional anglers worldwide
Bestseller No. 7
BASSDASH 175 Pieces Octopus Offset Fishing Hooks Assortment in Hook Sizes 6/0, 4/0, 3/0, 2/0, 1/0,...
  • Includes 175 pcs extra sharp Octopus Offset hooks in seven assorted sizes: 6/0, 4/0, 3/0, 2/0, 1/0,...
  • The unique chemically sharpened pressing blade point combined with a smaller barb provides...
  • Sharpen offset point design increases the potential to catch hold
Bestseller No. 8
Mustad Classic Extra Strong Forged Reversed Turned Up Eye Knife Edge Point Octopus/Beak Hook (Pack...
  • Wide gap, same size as comparable standard treble
  • In-line hook eye and point create 100% power hook sets
  • Unique bend forces fish into Elbow, making it virtually impossible to Throw the hook
ON SALE $13.51 OFFBestseller No. 9
Gamakatsu Black Octopus Hook, 100 Pack, Size: 1 (02410-100)
  • Significantly increase you chances of Landing the catch
  • Made environmentally friendly
  • Used by professional anglers worldwide
Bestseller No. 10
Octopus Fishing Hooks - 50/150 pcs Barbed Bait Holder Fishing Hooks Jig Hook Extra Sharp High Carbon...
  • Octopus fishing hooks is super sharp, sharp barbed point make sure good penetration to help you...
  • Octopus baitholder hooks includes 2 Baitholder Barbs, Off-set Point, Closed Eye, for good...
  • Octopus baitholder hooks includes 2 Baitholder Barbs, Off-set Point, Closed Eye, for good...


If you do a good amount of fishing with live baits like minnows, worms and leeches, and you haven’t already added octopus hooks to your tackle arsenal, it’s time that you do. Knowing when and where to employ these unique hooks will go a long way in helping you give the fish you’re after a totally distinct and realistic look while also providing you with the same environmentally-friendly hooking capabilities that circle hooks offer. When used properly in the right scenarios, it’s truly hard to beat the productivity and performance of octopus hooks. 

Last update on 2021-12-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Donny Karr

Donny Karr is an avid outdoorsman and writer whose work has been featured in magazines and websites for nearly a decade. He enjoys bass and crappie fishing in the lakes around the southeastern United States, as well as trout fishing in the streams and rivers of the Appalachian mountains. He enjoys keeping up with the latest news and gear items in the fishing industry and is always looking forward to his next outdoor adventure. Donny has written for Georgia Outdoor News, The Outdoor Trip, Man Can Outdoors, Global Fishing Reports, and Bassmaster.