what size hook for Bluegill

What Size Hook For Bluegill Is Best: Answered

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Bluegill are not known for being too picky, frankly they will go for pretty much anything but that said there are some good guidelines to follow when it comes to what size hook for Bluegills you should be using and also baits.

The short answer is you want to be using either a size 6, 8, or 12 hook for Bluegill depending on the bait you are using. Size 6 is better for larger live baits and size 8 or 12 for small baits like a small minnow or worms.

Keep reading to find out more about the best baits and types of hooks to use for Bluegill to help increase your catch rate.

Best Bait, Lures, & Line To Catch Bluegill

To be clear here, the absolute best bait to use for bluegill is live bait. They seem to like live bait the most, and will eat mostly anything.

The funny thing is that bluegill are known for being bold, and will often eat all kinds of scraps that people throw in the water, such as old meat, veggies, fruit, and breadcrumbs.

They are known for being very bold, which is a good thing when it comes to fishing. For instance, in certain parts of Canada and North America, these fish are known to allow themselves to be pet and stroked by people.

Bluegill will go for most lures (here are the good ones to use) and baits, whether artificial or not. However, what does seem to make a difference is smell, which is something you usually won’t get from artificial lures.

Artificial Lures/Baits

In terms of the best artificial lures and baits to use for bluegill. Small and highly reflective spoons seem to work very well, as do minnows. Crank baits are not too ideal here, but they still work, as do spinner baits.

Really, as long as the lure is not too large, creates a bit of water movement, and reflects some light, it should attract bluegill.

Live Baits

As we mentioned before, live baits usually work best for bluegill, and therefore you will need to choose the right hook for the bait in question.

When it comes down to it, the favorite live bait to use for bluegill is the simple night crawler or earth worm.

earthworm bait for bluegill

You can even use half of a worm. Crickets, although hard to find in bait stores, also work very well to catch bluegill.

If you don’t have worms or crickets at your disposal, they will also go for wax worms, beetles, and really most kinds of insects and grubs.

As we said before, any live insect, or even small minnows, as long as they give off a smell and look tasty, should do the trick.

Related: How To Make A Worm Farm.

Best Hook Size For Bluegill

When it comes to bluegill, they are known as being bait thieves. If you use a hook that is either too large or too small, chances are that the bluegill will snatch the bait right off the hook without ever biting the hook, and therefore will get away from you.

When it comes to bluegill hook size, a #6, #8, or #12 hook is what you should be using. These hooks are on the larger side of things, but they do work well, as you want there to be enough surface area and enough of the hook pointing out to actually hook into the bluegill.

If you are using live bait such as larger beetles or really fat worms, something larger like a #6 hook is good.

However, if you are using smaller bait, such as a small minnow or thin worm, something smaller like a size #8 or #12 is going to be ideal.

Ok, just to touch on the size of lures you use, whether a spoon, spinner, crank, jig or anything else, size does matter.

For instance, with a jig, anything over 1/32 of an ounce is too big. Bluegill are not very big, and they won’t go for a massive crankbait or frog.

It needs to be something fairly small. Even more important is that it looks realistic, and even better is if you can get a bit of a smell on your artificial lure too.

Smell, as we mentioned before, is a pretty big deal when it comes to catching bluegill.

Best Hooks To Use For Bluegill

For catching bluegill, you do also want to use the right type of hook, something that will allow the live bait to stay on the hook while the bluegill tries to eat it, and will allow the bait to stay on the hook during the cast.

There are 3 main hooks which we would recommend using for bluegill, and they are as follows;

1. Bait Holder Hooks

Bait holder hooks are specially designed to hold live baits like worms, beetles and grubs. They are perfect for bluegill fishing because bluegill love live bait.

Also, these hooks can be found in all of the sizes you might need for bluegill fishing.

2. Worm Hooks

Worm hooks are also great to use for bluegill fishing, as they are designed to securely hold onto worms of all sizes.

Since bluegills are known to be bait thieves, these hooks work well as they are designed to ensure that the bait, in this case the worm, does not easily come off the hook.

They are often used with plastic baits as well, which is also acceptable for bluegill fishing.

3. Jig Hooks

Lots of people like to use the jigging technique when fishing for bluegill. If you are jigging, there is nothing better to use than a jig hook.

They are great in terms of hook setting, plus they are fine for both live and artificial bait.

Bluegill – Basic Information

Bluegill, depending on where you are from might go by a different name. If you hear people talking about copper nose, brim, or bream, they are talking about the bluegill. To be fair most people will actually refer to them as bream.

Anyway, the bluegill is also known as a panfish. The reason for this is well, they come in a very convenient size, one that fits right in a pan or skillet.

Bluegills can grow up to 12 inches long and weigh 4 or 5 pounds, although on occasion some slightly large specimen have been found.

At any rate, their size usually does not exceed this. It’s important to keep in mind because the size of the fish will determine the size of the hook you need to use for it, or at least to a certain extent.

Just so you know, bluegills have a distinct deep blue color on most of their bodies, with olive bands or stripes, and a purplish face.

If you go fishing for bluegill or bream, they are most often found in slow-moving streams or rivers, and in shallow waters, such as shallow lakes or in the shallows of larger lakes.

This information does come in handy when it comes to actually finding bluegill.


At the end of the day, just remember to use a size #6, #8, or #12 hook for bluegill fishing, and try to use a jog, worm, or bait holder hook, as they are best for live bait, which works best for bluegill fishing.

Now that you know what hook to use, go out there, catch some bluegill panfish, and fry it up with some butter, lemon, and dill!