I have read in archive George Roofs answer for Kevin O'Brien on 6/3/00, that arsenic, used earlier in taxidermy, is very poisonous.
I live in to the capital of Latvia - Riga. Latvia is on a coast of the Baltic sea. I work in Taxidermy workshop and we smear skin of birds with solution of salt of arsenic till now. And I usually do that without gloves. If it"s not difficult for you, write me please - what drug do you use instead of arsenic and how much it costs.
You can look our production to the address: http://www.taxidermy.lv/produkti.asp
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we use a commercially produced dry preservative that is a combination of "drugs". you can find the pricing on the WASCO site. i like your work!
We use borax and borax additive compounds in the place of the old Arsenic salts. I would question handling any arsenate compound with bare hands, unless your medical team has given you just a short time to live due to terminal illness. Arsenic is a slow building toxin whose effects, like lead and other heavy metal oxides, accrue in the human body over long periods of time until dibilitating or life threatening symptoms occur. I, for one, would not wait until clinical evidence of arsenic poisoning appear to begin taking precautions by wearing latex or other protective gloves and a mask capable of filtering out dust to a mininum of 10 micron diameter.
Try your browser for borax, the element and search from there.