I wouldn’t feel bad about your local fly shop not stocking dry fly hackle. I bought about 50 capes and saddles this past year, and I don’t think I got more than a couple from my local fly shop in SE PA. It is a multi-location fly shop that is one of the largest on the east coast. They stock very few, if any, dry fly higher quality necks and capes these days, and it’s not that I didn’t want to buy from them, it’s that they told me they couldn’t get them from Whiting. I therefore have to believe that the demand for dry fly quality hackle is still there overall, but perhaps not in your local market, for whatever reasons.

The other thing is that a lot of dry flys simply aren’t tied with hackle. Look at all the fly patterns that use hair or CDC in lieu of hackle these days.