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Thread: Possible pheasant feathers in November

  1. #1
    Member moose-head's Avatar
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    Default Possible pheasant feathers in November

    I donít want to count my chickens (or pheasant) before they hatch, but I have been invited to hunt the pheasant opener here in Kansas next month with one of the local farmers. He seems confident that we should get some birds as there is a large group of hunters that goes out every year. It seems to me that I recall some requests for pheasant feathers by some of the fly tiers on this forum during the winter months. I would be happy to get some of the feathers from some of our birds, as I donít think that they are retained as a rule by the hunters here although I think that people do save the long tail feathers. I could send a package of pheasant feathers to somebody who is fairly centrally located who could then give them to others to use over the winter months. I would just as soon box up what we get into one package and send them to one person who could arrange to give them to others. What feathers from which part of the bird do fly tiers like to use the most? I am not selling them and I donít want anything in return, I would just like to use as much of the parts from the animals that we harvest as I can out of respect for the animals, and perhaps help out some people from the forum at the same time. If somebody would like to get them and give them to others pm me and I will send them to you. I do need to know which feathers are best for tying though.

    Thanks Moose-head
    If you board the wrong train, it is no use running along the corridor in the other direction.
    Dietrich Bonhoeffer

  2. #2

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    Moosehead, When I was a kid I used to tie pheasant feathers onto a hook and catch bluegill and crappies with them. I used the the fine feathers and it worked just like a crappie jig.

    Also the long tail feathers float. One can tie a line to the big end and use them for bobbers. When you tie them on right they stand on end when you get a bite!

  3. #3

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    I use a ton of tail feathers and also both wings. The tails for tying flies and the wings for doing feathers for arrows. I'd gladly grab them and split it up. Can always use more tails. My schedule is pretty wild right now. I also may be in MN for a day chasing birds so I might be able to add to the take. Not sure yet if my trip is going to happen at this time.

    Guess if no one else is willing I'll gladly be!

  4. #4
    Premium Member Wyo2AK's Avatar
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    That's a very generous offer moose-head. I don't need any pheasant feathers myself - I made it back to WY for some pheasant hunts last year and restocked - but I'd take you up on it otherwise.

    Pretty much all of the feathers from a pheasant are useful for fly tying.
    Tail feathers (likely the most sought after feathers) are used for tails, legs, antenna, bodies, wingcases, etc. Most common in nymphs, such as the (aptly named) pheasant tail nymph
    Blue/green rump feathers make awesome soft hackles, such as for the carey special. The larger feathers also make good spey hackle for smaller flies.
    The brown and tan feathers from the back are often seen used as pectoral fins for sculpin patterns.
    I use the bronze and gold and black feathers from the breast and sides for soft hackles and wing cases for marabou prawn patterns.
    I use the green and white feathers from the neck as eyes (a cheap junglecock replacement) for streamer patterns.

    I'm sure there are lots of other uses if you put your mind to it. You often see the entire skin (minus the tails) for sale in fly shops.
    http://www.chifly.com/item.asp?prodI...b=SUB_CATEGORY


    Good luck on your pheasant hunt, moose-head! It's been a long time since I made it down to Kansas for birds.
    Pursue happiness with diligence.

  5. #5
    Member cube01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyo2AK View Post
    That's a very generous offer moose-head. I don't need any pheasant feathers myself - I made it back to WY for some pheasant hunts last year and restocked - but I'd take you up on it otherwise.

    Pretty much all of the feathers from a pheasant are useful for fly tying.
    Tail feathers (likely the most sought after feathers) are used for tails, legs, antenna, bodies, wingcases, etc. Most common in nymphs, such as the (aptly named) pheasant tail nymph
    Blue/green rump feathers make awesome soft hackles, such as for the carey special. The larger feathers also make good spey hackle for smaller flies.
    The brown and tan feathers from the back are often seen used as pectoral fins for sculpin patterns.
    I use the bronze and gold and black feathers from the breast and sides for soft hackles and wing cases for marabou prawn patterns.
    I use the green and white feathers from the neck as eyes (a cheap junglecock replacement) for streamer patterns.

    I'm sure there are lots of other uses if you put your mind to it. You often see the entire skin (minus the tails) for sale in fly shops.
    http://www.chifly.com/item.asp?prodI...b=SUB_CATEGORY


    Good luck on your pheasant hunt, moose-head! It's been a long time since I made it down to Kansas for birds.
    Not to hijack this thread, but how are you using the neck feathers as eyes? Sounds interesting...

  6. #6
    Premium Member Wyo2AK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cube01 View Post
    Not to hijack this thread, but how are you using the neck feathers as eyes? Sounds interesting...
    I take a white feather from the neck and tie it on each side of the fly. Then I take a head/neck feather (which are actually often more a irridescent blue purple than a green) and tie it on over the white feather, but leaving a thick border of white visible in the back. Give's a good eye spot framed nicely by the white border. Forgive my crude paint skills but you get the idea.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Pursue happiness with diligence.

  7. #7
    Member cube01's Avatar
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    Ahh... I see. said the blind man... Interesting.
    Thanks Wyo...

  8. #8
    Member slimm's Avatar
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    Pretty easy to skin em,,just takes a little more time, but it's worth it..
    Just cut or snap the wings and legs off, cut the skin from the top of the neck down to the crapper, then cut the head off.
    Then just pull the skin down to the the tail feathers, cut the joint right where the quills end, leaving the tail feathers attached.
    Scrape or cut the little bit of meat and fat off , spread a bunch of Mule team Borax 20/20 on the entire skin and tail bone rub it in gently then spread a little more Borax on.
    Next get the little bit of meat off the wings, more Borax,, let em sit for a few days to dry and yer done..
    The Borax does a great job of drying and cureing the skin, and bugs wont mess with it..
    Not trying to steal any thunder from Moose-head,, but i do a pretty fair amount of Upland hunting, Chukars, Huns, and Quail mainly,
    I'd be willing to skin a bunch out and ship em out to some folks also..
    I feel the same way as moose, just don't feel right throwing em away,, but not many folks seem to want em..

  9. #9
    Member cube01's Avatar
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    Whoever gets ahold of the batch from moose-head - I'll take some of them off your hands... I can help out with the shipping costs as well if you'd like moose.

  10. #10
    Member muzzyman87's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cube01 View Post
    Whoever gets ahold of the batch from moose-head - I'll take some of them off your hands... I can help out with the shipping costs as well if you'd like moose.
    Dude I can get these by the pound and some...
    I am not against the flippin kenai, since I cannot but suspect it keeps armies of the unworthy from discovering every other stream... ~Paul O'Neil~/~Wyo2AK~

  11. #11
    Member kwackkillncrew's Avatar
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    ya muzzy man lets go hit up our secet pheasant hunting spot

  12. #12
    Member cube01's Avatar
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    Moose-Head - I got the box of pheasant today! They will be put to good use - One of the wings will be used for training my field dog, and the rest will definitely find their way into skip and pheasant tail nymphs.
    In order to share the wealth I'll bring the box by 3 Rivers this Saturday during our tie and lie session and see if anyone wants a piece of the action.

    Thanks again Moose! (I'd be a much older man by the time I got anything out of Muzzy :-P)



    (Note: Moose sent me these out of sheer generosity - he didn't even charge me shipping... Very, very, generous.)

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