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Went out this morning before school trying to get on some reds or possibly jacks. Ended up catching my first shark! Had to baby him due to only running 20lb mono and a 40lb leader but after about 20 minutes or so of walking up and down the beach I was finally able to land him.

At that point, I tried to reach and get the hook out and he snapped at me so I cut the line and he went back into the water, lol. It was a little intimidating with him up on the beach. Any recommendations or best practices for getting the hook out?

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The "hook rusting out shortly" is generally absolutely false. If at all possible, you should ALWAYS make an effort to remove the hook. With that being said, if you don't have a proper pliers/hook removing tool on you, then at least make sure that you cut the line at the knot so that there isn't a trail of line hanging off of the shark's mouth.
 

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I agree, but if you weren't comfortable than cut as close as you can, I'm comfortable removing a hook from a small-medium shark, and no the hook wont "rust out" in a week or two but he should be fine.
 

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Just to add to the "hook rusting out" theory, here is a photo of a 73'' bull shark I caught several years ago that had a 20/0 Mustad in it. You can tell from the huge purplish, rotting, open sore encompassing the area around where the hook was (& from the mound of barnacles attached to the hook & the snell knot that was left around the shank) that it had been there for a LONG time. It's sad that people do this. I removed it & I've had it as a cool memento ever since.
 

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I caught a bonita once that had a hook in it's side. it was rusty but it was still stout. hadn't really even began to decay.
 

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Great job landing the shark with light gear! Well done!
I agree with ThaFish, if you can remove the hook safely.
If not ... cut it as close as possible and release.
Again, great catch!
 

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Takeing advice on hook removal from sharks. Somebody is gonna get bit! Just cut the line, easy button!!WTH


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Nice catch on light weight gear, no matter what anybody says if your not OK with getting that close to it's mouth cut the line, a bite from even a small one can be bad. Good job.
 
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