If the Great Spirit was to tap me on the shoulder & say: ‘Harken! Thou shalt possess no other animal but one for use in the construction of flyes.’
I would not be dismayed. I would procure a complete cock ringneck pheasant cape with tail & go my way, content.
Pheasant Rump Craw
Hook: Plastic worm style – wrap the hook shank with lead wire
Claws: Mixed, pale orange, & mottled-olive/brown rubber – 2 equal clumps tied in, one on both sides of the hook shank – apply a couple turns of brown yarn or synthetic dubbing at the hook bend prior to tying in the rubber, then a couple turns of dubbing over the tie-in point after the rubber is tied in, which aids in keeping the ‘claws’ somewhat separate – the separation won’t be well-defined, but that is okay, we don’t want them widespread, as that might cause the imitation to propeller
Body: Mixed rump hackle taken from a cock ringneck pheasant – begin with a ‘church window’ hackle taken from the top of the cape, just above the tail – I clip the hackles where the stem starts to get too fat to wind (don’t strip the ‘marabou’ off), tie in at the base end of the hackle stem, grasping the tip, fold back the barbs from both sides of the stem while winding forward toward the hook eye, each turn snug to the prior – alternate the church window hackles from the back of the cape with the marabou-like rump hackle taken from the sides, for the first half (thorax) of the craw, then the rest of the way to the hook eye with the shorter rump hackles taken from the sides – depending on the hook size, it may take 6 or more hackles – after winding the first hackle, tie in 2 strands of 3/64 UNI-Mylar blue/copper tinsel, extending back to just beyond the rubber.
Flyfish NE Washington with Steven Bird: http://ucflyfishing.blogspot.com