Other/suggested uses for a pheasant skin?


"Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere" Neil Young
A few months back an acquaintance, who new I occasionaly attempted to tye, gave me an entire pheasant hyde/skin. Of course I know uses for the tail feathers, but what about the rest of the feathers? I looked in a couple reference books I have, and only the rump feathers are talked about. How else might I utilize the other feathers? Any suggestions for a rookie would be great! Thanks guys.


Active Member
The "church window" feathers make excellent golden stone nymph wingcases and are also useful for tying a Harrop's Still Water Caddis wing when tying one with a tan or brownish wing. Also, you can dye the small white neck feathers for use as kingfisher, toucan, or Indian Crow susbstitutes. The "blue phase" feathers in the middle of many rump patches is uses as a collar on a fly Don Kaas of Port Angeles originated for coho called the BLUE & PURPLE PHEASANT [tag: oval silver tinsel; body: purple braided mylar; ribbing: oval siler; wing: very light and pale blue calftail (powder blue is the color it is gotten by using a very weak dye bath of torquise acid dye); hackle: blue phase pheasant rump tied in and wrapped after the wing is mounted].

The aftershaft feathers, which are the short marabou-like feathers found attached to the base of each rump feather, make excellent thoraxes on nymphs and when dyed olive make a very slim and mobile damsel fly nymph.

However, the rump and tail feathers are the most useful.

Jeremy Husby

Is there a Vahalla for fishermen?
Be creative . . . Pluck a feather out and see what properties does it have, what can be done with it . . . . mount a hook and start to tie, it the best way to learn what materials do what. I recently tied a Free Style Salmon fly completly out of pheasant skins, turn out alright and I learned allot about feathers I have never had the chance to try.
I've tied many a successful fly from all over the pheasant skin. Just find a pattern you want to tie and substitute something from your pheasant skin that somewhat resembles the color you want. FT mentioned several good uses. The blueish-gray or greenish-gray filaments (not really a feather per se) I've found very useful for tails, legs, and even bodies for miscellaneous flies, especially nymphs. I'm not sure if these are what FT is referring to as "blue phase" feathers or not, but they're kinda' unique looking.

Anyhow, just use your imagination. There are no hard rules in tying. Most of the famous patterns we know and love now, were originally tied by some guy using the materials he had on hand at the time. Personally, I love to buy up cheap, high yield items like whole skins & racoon tails, mink tails, etc. After studying the makeup of these furs & feathers a little, I've found endless uses for them. I've scarcely seen a pattern that calls for racoon fur, but yet I've used it quite extensively and successfully for dubbing, tails, wings, etc. Ok, I suppose you get the point, I'll stop rambling. Have fun! :thumb: