Soft Ostrich Feathers are among the oldest materials used to tie artificial flies. We can use them on many different dressings, mostly on wet flies and nymphs, due to the ability of the ostrich fibers to absorb water with their tiny barbules, which helps the fly to sink and breath and pulse in the currents. Virtually every part of a fly can be reproduced with these fluffy fibers; you can tie them in clump as tails for nymphs or streamers, create breathing bodies and legs, thoraxes and wing cases. The barbules of the ostrich feathers are perfect to reproduce the body gills on mayflies nymphs. Try to mix different colors of ostrich to create special textures for realistic bodies.
Few turns of a black ostrich fiber are a distinguishing characteristic of the vast majority of classic salmon flies to form the butts and many of the heads on salmon flies by authors like W. Blacker or E. Fitzgibbon are made with this material in different color shades, from black to green, orange, brown and blue.