Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

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RobSmith1964
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Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by RobSmith1964 » Sat Aug 15, 2020 1:29 pm

Some thoughts on the seemingly impossible conundrum of a suitable substitution to the Brown Owl hackle.
https://www.theslidingstream.net/the-brown-owl/
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Ron Eagle Elk
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Re: Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by Ron Eagle Elk » Sun Aug 16, 2020 8:15 am

I thoroughly enjoyed that, Rob. Thank you for sharing that.
"A man may smile and bid you hale yet curse you to the devil, but when a good dog wags his tail he is always on the level"
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letumgo
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Re: Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by letumgo » Sun Aug 16, 2020 9:09 am

Thanks Robert. I enjoyed reading thru the article, and admiring the photos of real owl feathers along with the substitute. Owl feathers have a unique “fuzzy” structure, which helps dissipate noice during flight (one of the reasons owls are so silent during flight). I have a wet fly book by Ken Sawada, in which he used owl feathers for one of his winged wet flies. It was one of my favorite photos from the book, because the material was so interesting.

I’m glad some of these rare materials live on in the collections like yours. Good stuff.
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RickA
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Re: Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by RickA » Sun Aug 16, 2020 10:21 am

Robert,
I just finished reading your article and went out to the hen coop.
I picked up the double laced Barnevelder and was looking at it's rump when...

wife: RICK!
me: what?
Wife: Don't even think about it!!!

She looks close. :twisted:
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Tom Smithwick
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Re: Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by Tom Smithwick » Sun Aug 16, 2020 3:43 pm

Rob's excellent post got me thinking the same way Rick, only I don't need to raid the henhouse. Just before everything closed down in PA, I went to the Lancaster Fly Fishing show and saw this on one of the tables. It was fairly expensive for a hen skin, but I could not resist. All of the feathers are fairly soft, the ones at the back end especially so. Thanks to Rob, I have a better idea what to do with them now.
hen.JPG
hen.JPG (162.61 KiB) Viewed 978 times
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letumgo
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Re: Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by letumgo » Sun Aug 16, 2020 4:05 pm

Whoa. That is a lovely hen skin. I’ve never seen one skinned like that. Would you mind sharing the name of the seller?
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Tom Smithwick
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Re: Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by Tom Smithwick » Mon Aug 17, 2020 9:04 am

Hi Ray - It came from a place called Sideling Hill Hackle. It was the first time I saw them and I don't know anything about them, but they seemed to have some interesting stuff.
https://www.facebook.com/sidelinghillhackle/
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Re: Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by letumgo » Mon Aug 17, 2020 11:30 am

Thanks Tom. ;)
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ronr
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Re: Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by ronr » Mon Aug 17, 2020 5:18 pm

Very interesting piece and nice video, thanks Robert. I was once gifted a few small owl feathers and used one to tie the brown owl. I was informed that it is illegal in the states to possess owl feathers. To my cohorts here on the forum, if we were to possess as has Robert in the UK, a collection of preserved birds; would it be illegal to use them to tie flies for our own use or enjoyment? I recognize there is a law which prohibits one from killing any number of birds in the US, but using a feather from roadkill or gift, seems to be a grey area.
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Ron Eagle Elk
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Re: Brown Owl Hackle Substitution

Post by Ron Eagle Elk » Tue Aug 18, 2020 11:15 am

There really isn't a grey area about it. If your in possession of a feather from a protected species, it becomes a case of prove you didn't kill the bird. Having the feather, not it's use, is illegal and a Federal crime.
"A man may smile and bid you hale yet curse you to the devil, but when a good dog wags his tail he is always on the level"
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