• Snowshoe Rabbit Foot

    Snowshoe Rabbit Foot

    Rabbit’s Foot or Snowshoe Hare Foot is a durable and versatile material for dry flies, emerges and nymphs. The hair from the feet is naturally water repellant and provides some natural buoyancy to flies tied with it. The hair can be used for wings, tails shucks and dubbing. Like many body hairs, the feet have an underfur which makes for an excellent dubbing. You simply clip a section of hair off the foot pad and pull or comb out the underfur to save for future use. The hair is also somewhat transparent in the water, allowing the light to glint off the strands of errant hair.

    The most famous use of the foot hair likely comes from Fran Betters’ The Usual. The fly is simple and created from just snowshoe hare, thread and a hook. A clump of hair is tied in as a wing over the hook eye, and another tied in as a tail and then dubbed with the collected underfur. The dubbing can be short and wiry, but gives an ideal buggy look to the fly.

    The natural colour of the hair will depend on when the animal was harvested. Winter hare’s will have white or cream hair while those taken in warmer months will have buff to darker brown hair. You can also find a number of dyed colours available from supplies like Hareline and Superfly which can be duns, olives, browns, sulphur and even some more exotic bright colours can be found. They are normally sold as a pair, but some sellers only list single feet.

  • Strung Rooster Schlappen

    Schlappen are large wide and webby feathers that come from the lower saddle area of the rooster, and alongside the tail. The hackles are useful for a number of applications. Saltwater patterns use the schlappen for tails and collars on the largest patterns. The schlappen fibers make great tails, and throats on streamer patterns. Salmon and tube flies often employ schlappen for collars. The feathers have also been used by classic streamer (Carrie Stevens etc.) fly tyers for the tails throats and under shoulder elements of the fancy streamers.

    Schlappen has quite long and soft fibers that flow and conform to the water flowing over it. Colors are commonly dyed over a white base, but chinchilla (grizzly-like), bronze (black and white) and other natural base colors can be used. Larger packs and unique colors that don’t appear in the fly shops can often be found on Ebay and Amazon with a bit of searching. The schlappen often comes sewn on a strip, but may also be sold loose, usually as a premium product that has a better quality.

  • Whiting American Rooster Capes

    Whiting American is a line of feathers that is specifically breed for long wide feathers. These rooster capes come in a huge variety of colors both vibrant and earthy. The feathers on the Whiting American Rooster Capes have long lengths, wider bases than dry fly hackles and webby bases. The hackles are ideal for tying flies with lots of big feathers such as bass bugs, decievers, tarpon flies, pike flies, saltwater bait fish, and tradition featherwing streamers. Capes offer the most selection in size with the top feathers being wonderfully sized for small streamers and the bottom feathers reaching in excess of 5 inches, large enough for the biggest toothy critter attractors.

    Capes are available in many colors including natural patterns, dyed over grizzly, dyed over bader, dyed of black laced white, dyed over dun and dyed over white. A full partial listing of colors can be found at whitingfarms.com Not all the hackle variations are listed, but searching the online shops often turns up some interesting feathers.