I know several small game/bird hunters that hunt mourning doves. Has anyone tried any feathers from these birds? Is anything even of a useful size? Smaller sizes would be obvious.
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Posted 27 September 2018 - 02:44 AM
I would use many of the feathers on soft hackle flies, or fibers from the feathers as legs or tails on nymphs. Wet fly wings etc. Almost anything that you would use grouse, rail or starling feathers for as a starting place.
To preserve the skins (be sure all meat & fat is off the skin) put them in a shoe box or paper sack with enough 20 Mule Team Borax to cover the skin, close and leave it a week, shake off excess borax. If you can get the skin off in one piece, it can be pined out on cardboard (flesh side up) and borax sprinkled on or rubbed in. If, as I suspect will happen, there more loose feathers than pelt I'd just put all in a bag with a cup or two of borax and shake, shake it few times for a week. I've done this with ruffed grouse that was skinned in pieces.
Other mention of doves on this site
Posted 27 September 2018 - 08:29 AM
You can use the quills for wings on smaller flies but, like starling, they tend to split and look raggedy after a little handling/fishing. My opinion, not much else on a mourning dove would be "the best thing out there". Collared doves or pigeons are said to be better because they're bigger but I can't personally vouch. If your buddies get grouse, partridge, pheasant, duck, turkey, goose, then you'll be able to save some serious bucks.