Pheasant Tails

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ForumGhillie
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Pheasant Tails

Post by ForumGhillie » Thu Dec 13, 2018 9:00 am

I thought it might be interesting to discuss pheasant tails since it came up several times on the Sawyer's Nymph topic.

Below are the 5 pheasant tails colors I just received from CompetitiveAngler.com. Cookshill's PTs is just one center feather each and the Nature's Spirits' PTs are 2 to a pack.

All the fibers on all the PTs range in length from 1-1/2" long to 1-3/4" long.

The Cookshill Black Claret is so close to black, it's hard to tell the difference. Maybe when I do a wet test it will look different. Will various dyed colors matter to picky trout? Probably not, but it is what makes fly tying fun, at least for me.

A - Nature's Spirit Select Pheasant Center Tails - Natural
B - Nature's Spirit Select Pheasant Center Tails - Galloup's Brown Olive
C - Nature's Spirit Select Pheasant Center Tails - Olive
D - Cookshill Select Cock Pheasant Tail (1 Center Tail) - Black Claret
E - Cookshill Select Cock Pheasant Tail (1 Center Tail) - Dark Olive
pheasant-tails.jpg
Nature's Spirit and Cookshill dyed pheasant tails
pheasant-tails.jpg (122.33 KiB) Viewed 661 times

Note: I just sent an email to Natures Spirit about the poor quality of the Galloup's Brown Olive PTs, they look like the rooster got in a fight, especially near the top. Natures Spirit is one of the brands that I find always offers top-shelf materials so this came as a surprise to me. I didn't ask them to replace them I just wanted them to know.
narcodog
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Re: Pheasant Tails

Post by narcodog » Thu Dec 13, 2018 9:51 am

I would steam those tails and bring them back into alignment.
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tie2fish
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Re: Pheasant Tails

Post by tie2fish » Thu Dec 13, 2018 9:56 am

Personally, the only one of those I would keep is "A". I'm surprised about the others, as both Nature's Spirit and Cookshill are known for their high quality products. "B" and "C" are pretty shabby and the barbs on the Cookshill feathers are too skinny and short for my liking. Steaming as Bob suggests might help some, but meh ...
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Re: Pheasant Tails

Post by ForumGhillie » Thu Dec 13, 2018 10:17 am

narcodog wrote:
Thu Dec 13, 2018 9:51 am
I would steam those tails and bring them back into alignment.
Bob,

That's a great idea. I haven't steamed anything since I was a kid when I used to steam my gasoline/paraffin-waxed dry flies after using them to get the hackles to go back to its original state.

Bill, yes I was disappointed too. I have bought better PTs at Cabelas.

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Re: Pheasant Tails

Post by upstatetrout » Thu Dec 13, 2018 11:46 am

You could also wash the feathers using Woolite in a tub and swishing them around so that they remarry. Don't know how well this would work on dyed feathers but it works wonders on Golden Pheasat tails. The best pheasant feathers I ever got came from a hunter friend of mine who only hunts wild birds. He believes that farm raised birds will ruin a good dog.

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Re: Pheasant Tails

Post by Old Hat » Thu Dec 13, 2018 2:40 pm

I have found some very nice Spirit River PT's but there is some inconsistency with them. I have always done well ordering PT's from Jim Teeny's site. A guy who knows pheasant tails. I prefer the Antique gold over the natural. For naturals I've had good luck on eBay ordering full tails out of Nebraska and the Dakotas.
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Re: Pheasant Tails

Post by ForumGhillie » Thu Dec 13, 2018 6:30 pm

Nature's Spirit is replacing my PTs. They said the person doing the grading at time was not doing a good job. NS has always been good and I am sure they are trying to correct their PT quality issue.

I received some NS turkey flats dyed grey and they are awesome.
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Re: Pheasant Tails

Post by ForumGhillie » Fri Dec 14, 2018 8:13 pm

I finally got to tie a PT nymph with the Galloup's Brown Olive PT... it doesn't look a lot different than if I used natural PT. Thorax coated with UV Loon finish.
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wsbailey
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Re: Pheasant Tails

Post by wsbailey » Wed Dec 19, 2018 9:11 pm

As a side note, Moscow Hide and Fur has some really nice ring-necked pheasant skins available which include the tails. I have a pair of them.

https://www.hideandfur.com/inventory/3170.html
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Re: Pheasant Tails

Post by Bazzer69 » Wed Dec 19, 2018 11:18 pm

Wow, I just ordered some select PT’s from Cookshill. In the past I’ve been very happy with their products, but if mine are like those in the photograph I will be asking for my money back!
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