Fishing shops have been bombarded with hair stylists seeking hackles – long, skinny rooster feathers, which have been recently used as bait for fly fishing.
These feathers are not easy to come by in the first place. They come from genetically bred roosters, which are raised for their plumage. It takes a rooster about a year of coddling before the bird can develop suitable plumage. Further, sadly, in most cases, the birds do not survive the plucking.
Today, women have been weaving and placing these feathers in their hair as part of the hottest new trend: feather extensions, in which most salons have been selling these feather strands for $5 to $10 apiece.
These feathers have become so high in demand for hair and beauty salons that fly-fishing equipment companies are experiencing difficulty keeping them in store. Supplies at stores are quickly running out and feathers online are selling for hundreds of dollars more than usual prices. It’s not uncommon to now find a package of rooster saddle feathers pricing from $200 to $400, as compared to its previous price of $60.
Fly fishermen are not happy, due to the feathers’ increased price and decreased lack of availability.
For years, fly fishermen have used and crafted these rooster feathers to mimic the appearance of insects sitting atop water. These feathers have successfully helped fishermen lure in several large fish.
Fishing shops are now having to hold onto a select number of hackles to save for their regular customers. They are also asking other customers if the feathers are to be used for hairdressing. Some fishing shops are refusing to sell hackles for hairdressing usage.
How long is this trend going to last?