I WAS WONDERING IF ANY ONE KNOWS WHAT IT TAKES TO BECOME A USDA APPROVED TAXIDERMIST. I'VE CALLED USDA AND THEY GIVE THE RUN AROUND. IT SEEMS TO ME IT IS A HUSH,HUSH TYPE OF DEAL. ANY HELP WOULD BE GREATLY APPRECIATED
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WHY exactly do you need to be certified by the Department of Agriculture? I don't understand what they have to do with taxidermy. Maybe it is super hush hush, as you say.
You don't have to be certified by the USDA. This permit is to allow you to act as a Quarantine station. All animals entering the United States must go through a Quarantine station. If you bypass it and get caught, you are violating Federal law. Including the Lacy Act. The government is very serious about this as they should be. Anyone can get this permit. You need some things to get it. Separate freezers, A place that can be cleaned with Environ D. This is a cleaner that will kill any virus or germ. Environ D is about $100 a gallon. You need to be able to incinerate the carcases and fat. You need to be inspected every year by a USDA Veterinarian. and the permit cost me $360 Makes $50 per bird to get a bird skinned decreased washed and disinfected and ready to mount sound pretty reasonable.
Tony is right on usda. Depending on what state you are in try your state veternary office he's usually the USDA officer anyway. If this is the case and if you are located far from his office he may charge travel time on top of the permit fee with each visit. (all part of the Clinton admin. user fee system)
Depending on what and where you are receiving animals from it may not be worth it. Most of the major tanneries can handle the usda permits for you if you have the shipment sent directly to them.