How do you sterilize feathers? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

Hi Everyone, My friend just introduced me to this forum and I love it! Does anyone out there know how to sterilize feathers without ruining their natural beauty? I saved the feathers from a ruffed grouse and was going to use them to make dream catchers, but was told by someone that they should be sterilized first. That person didn't know how this was done, and I haven't been able to find anything on this subject in any of my old books and magazines. Any help you can provide will be appreciated. Sandy

-- Sandra J. Metzger (, November 12, 2000


I always just sprayed them with a light coat of hairspray

-- STAN (, November 12, 2000.

There are more germs on your live fingers at any given time than what may be on some dead feathers. Live dangerously.

-- JLS (, November 12, 2000.

I think the biggest threat would be lice or mites, which will chew the feathers. Here are some of the things I have done to clean and debug feathers that seemed to work pretty good.

Put them in a paper bag with borax, washing soda and some boric acid and shake them around. Shake it daily for several days.

Put them in the microwave for a few seconds, enough to cook bugs and germs, but not enough to cook the feathers.

For long term storage, I keep them in a box or tin with a little borax and dried pennyroyal.

What never worked for me was using expensive bug sprays or other "store bought " preparations.

My daughter and I both collect feathers and enjoy feather crafting.

-- Laura (, November 13, 2000.

Thanks for your input and suggestions. Laura, you hit the nail on the head. Mites were the things my friend warned me about. I'll try your suggestions.

-- Sandy (, November 13, 2000.

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