April Vokey dispenses some great advise on how to handle, prepare and of course how to tie with rhea feathers. April has a ton of experience tying with rhea as can be seen in the fly patterns she ties in pursuit of steelhead and salmon. She is also the force behind flygal.ca, which happens to sell a range of the feathers dyed in mainly steelhead colors with a few trout colors in the mix.
There have been tons of steelhead and salmon flies requiring rhea feathers which are similar to ostrich, but the barbules on each herl are much smaller, giving the rhea herls a much slimmer profile. They are also stiffer and so the tend not to collapse into the fly as much once it is dunked. Flies such as Intruders, Hoh Bo Spey and a myriad of custom locals only patterns.
Buying rhea can be tricky, as not many retailers carry them, and the feathers can cost $10-15 each depending on the quality. Ask around for a good reliable source. Online is even trickier as you may get the lesser quality feathers (yes, this has happened to me). Have a peak at the video for some advise on how to go about tying with rhea and maintaining durability in your flies.