Thursday, December 13, 2007

Woodcock Feathers

The wing feathers of European Woodcock (Scolopax rusticola) have a stunning combination of brown, rust, tan and grey tones. Known for centuries as a traditional fly tying material, they are somewhat similar to snipe covert feathers. They are indispensable for classic wet flies, but can also be useful for various dries and emergers. I've been playing around with several variations on the familiar theme (see previous blog entries)...

Woodcock & CDC Flymph

Tail: Lemon wood duck
Body: Wrapped CDC feather
Collar: Woodcock covert feather

Soggy CDC Caddis (Freshly Hatched Caddis)

Body: Cream opossum
Wing: Ginger CDC
Support hackle: Grizzly-brown rooster, clipped on the bottom
Front hackle: Woodcock covert feather (single turn), slightly oversized



These woodcock feather are so great! I am guessing they are not only looks great, they are pretty strong right? The only thing I don't like the partridge is they break down pretty easily. I will get some of the snipe/woodcock this winter...Again great post!


flyfishingunlimited said...

You are right Mark! Partridge is little softer, but weaker. I also like the rust brown color of woodcock.

BG said...

Great post Vlad. Those feathers look great.....The Caddis really caught my attention. Guess I am going to NEED some of those now, you never can have too many flies : )

flyfishingunlimited said...

Hey Bryan,

I'd say woodcock wings sure beat those little partridge feather- packs available in most fly shops. The primary feathers are also nice for caddis and wet fly wings.

I just wish they would be more widely available. American woodcock would be another great alternative (easier to get if you hunt).


two rod said...

You should give bobwhite quail a try. Great color and as it is a small bird the feathers tie in the 12-20 range. A great match for pheasant tail. Proper recommends it.

flyfishingunlimited said...

Indeed... I used European quail feathers (used to hunt them years ago), but have not tried bobwhite yet. Beautiful birds!!