For the Tellico, you could use the beard style or a collar style hackle. For hackle material, could use a rooster hackle, hen hackle or partrige. Any feather that is not too long will do, just be sure to use only a few turns. We only want to simulate nymph legs, not float a dry fly. See Hen hackle prep or Dry fly Hackle prep.And Hackle Selection for more info.

Every hackle has a dull side and a shiny side (convex) with the hackle fibers having a tendency to lean toward the dull (concave) side. Hold hackle with trimmed area of stem base at an angle against your side of the hook shank in front of wingcase. Slightly rotate so that shineyside(convex) is partly facing you. This is the opposite of the direction of dry fly hackle. The hackle barbs should be angled slightly rearward after wrapping hackle.

Make loose wrap of thread and tighten.

This rolls dull side toward hook eye and rolls stem on top of hook shank. Secure with 5 or 6 tight wraps of thread toward eye and leave thread at hook eye.

Attach hackle pliers to hackle tip. Make sure the pliers are in line with stem so that when you put tension on hackle, the stem is not bent. If stem is bent, it will be weak at that point and is prone to breakage. Some folks fold the hackle then tie it in by the tips (like I did on the Woo;y bugger). While it works ok with a large saddle hackle, a smaller stemmed hen hackle will easily break and come unravelled.
Begin wrapping forward to hook eye. Number of wraps will depend on size of hook. However, most nymphs only need 1 to 2 wraps of hackle.

A common mistake beginners make is to crowd the hackle wraps too close to hook eye and when the hackle is completed there is not enough room for the whip finish. This leads to material in eye of hook and it's difficult to get leader through hook eye.

Wraps should be side by side as you progress rearward and evenly spaced. This will help the hackle fibers stay perpendicular to shank and reduce fibers being bent alongside shank where they will get in the way of the whip finish.

When you reach eye, hold pliers above shank and forward of eye with right hand and secure hackle with 4 or 5 wraps of thread with left hand. This is done by grabbing bobbin with left hand , go up and over shank then back down other side and let bobbin hang down as you let go and bring your hand back to your side of shank to grab bobbin again and repeat thread wrap.

 

Release hackle tip from pliers and clip excess.

You are now ready to whip finish!


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