Do we turn the ears on a squirrel, or not.

Submitted by Tony Dingess on 12/1/99. ( )

Should I turn the ears on a squirrel or is it a waste of time. And should I tan or is instant preserve sufficient?

Return to Category Menu


This response submitted by Frank on 12/1/99. ( )

Yes you should turn them. To make it easyer take a shringe filled with water and inject it between the cartilage. This will aid in seperating the two. Leave the cartilage in and use critter clay or all-game or some kind of an epoxy. Keep it thin.
Tanning vs dry stuff
We all have a difference of opinion here, but I and the Squirell Man ( J.B ) will tell you tan it.

Can I Get An Amen!

This response submitted by John Bellucci on 12/1/99. ( )

Frank said it all ... and much more concise then I ever could! :)

Enjoy! John B.


This response submitted by George Roof on 12/1/99. ( )

I don't sit in the choir where these two guys preach this sermon. No matter how you dress up a tree rat, it won't ever look any different than a squirrel.

Inject the ears with any of several products on the market and dry preserve it. Anything other than a competition piece make anything extra a waste of valuable time that could be spent on work that would make you mortgage money.

Agree with Geo

This response submitted by Mark on 12/2/99. ( )

I have split the ears on squirrels in the past the ones I have injected don't look any different than the others. Time is money and I would rather spend money than time. Good Luck, Mark

Whoa-Back Jack!

This response submitted by John Bellucci on 12/2/99. ( )

Dems Fightin' Words!!! You COULDN"T think I was going to let THIS slide ... did you?

A waste of time? Get over it George! If that's the way you approach ANY job, then it is no wonder why you sometimes sound so freaking sour on your chosen profession.

I mean, if the founding fathers of this art had your opinions, there would be NO records left of the works they left behind.

Shove 'em in - shove 'em out! Is that your philosophy? We've butted heads on this "waste of time" attitude of yours before, and you know what? It STILL bites!

The true measure of the work we do is how well it stands the "test of time!" Those short cuts you propose are simply a symptom of someone who: (1) Doesn't charge enough for a particular job; (2) Doesn't care about the job or the customer at hand; or (3) Both!

And for the second guy ... it may not look different for a short time after the animal is mounted, but wait ... just give it a year or two. Even better yet, try comparing the ears on your mounts to those on the living, breathing animal. I mean, are you just a "skin-stuffer?" Do you even care about what it is you do? If not, then move on to something else.

There is enough crap being foisted on the American public out there under the title "Taxidermy" than I care to see! If you don't believe me ... then check out eBay!

And lastly ... Tree Rats? Kiss my a$$, okay! You made THAT statement around the WRONG guy pal! Do your research ... study some references! If you do, you'll find a HUGE difference in the physical appearance of these two distinctly different species! Tree Rats ... HA!

As Bugs Bunny has said, oh so many times ... "Of course you know -- this means War!" Well, ... now you've gone and done it! (Really, I hope this is taken in the spirit in which it was intended. I'm serious about the methods and the philosophy, the "tone" -- of which I am always roundly criticized for -- is "tongue-in-cheek" :)

Now back to a VERY serious issue! "A waste of valuable time?" I think not. Neither should be the taking of another creatures life EVER be considered a "waste of valuable time." We have a duty as "WILDLIFE RESTORERS" to give every specimen the best effort we are capable of producing. What may be a "waste of valuable time" to you, may be the first "trophy" of the next generation of hunters. Let's not start them off with that "sour taste" so many in this art seem to have for some of the work being done.

Tony, don't be "shamed" into doing the wrong thing. You really don't have to take short cuts to succeed. There is nothing wrong with going the "extra mile" for a piece of taxidermy you are working on. Always remember to charge a "livable wage" for your service, and you'll do just fine. No one ever gets rich doing this, but many of us sure do get cranky ... me included! :)

Here's to hopefully changing attitudes ... John B.


This response submitted by Art on 12/2/99. ( )

Why is it that because some of you think that because fi you're right, everybody else is wrong???
Sometimes we have to consider how to make the best quality mount at an affordable price. And we don't determine what the affordable price is...our customers do!
Here's to what's wrong with my attitude

Relax man..

This response submitted by Jim Tucker on 12/2/99. ( )

WOW! Still confused Tony? I am a firm believer in moving the work along, but I am also for doing it right. AS the old adage goes "It doesn't take any longer to do it right." I tan all of my small mammals even nut munchers. Nothing sets the hair on these troublesome little babies like a good pickling. If you get in the habit of tanning all of these little hairy creatures you get into a rythm where it doesn't take any longer for a tan. They will look a LOT better. One little confession though, I still use hollow black bubble eyes on them. Gotta go, JB just had a heart attack!!!

Gotta respond...

This response submitted by Pacemakr on 12/2/99. ( )

Here in WV hackadermists get $40.00 for a squirrel. I charge minimum $100.00. That says a lot to the customer about my work. All animals are trophys, someones first spike deer, or the President of the Safari Club's last deer. No difference at all.

I have to Agree with JB on this.....

This response submitted by Charles Gossett on 12/3/99. ( )

O.k. maybe not in the same explosive manner , but he is right.
I have been doing taxidermy for far fewer years than most people on here. 2years, but I spent a good year and a half doing nothing but reading, studying and researching the process involved in taxidermy before I even stated my first mount. That may seem a lot of waisted time for some but I have a big goal in life.
I don't care to be the best, but at the least one of the best.
I taught myself not to take short cuts and I think in the long haul it will pay off.
I don't care if I get 200 game head in if they all go out half a-sed I have defeated my whole purpose.
Last year I only did a few deer head. I did them right, and I and my clients were happy.
This year it looks like I'm going to get at least 50 and I am one of the most expensive in my area. alot of $150.00 deer here, I charge $300.00.
I don't want to say that the use of dry preserve is wrong, its not.
There is one way and there is a better way. I choose to give my customers the best way. My prices and pride in my work reflect that.

Sorry for the long winded message.
Charles Gossett

You guys are truly a humorous lot!

This response submitted by Tony Dingess on 12/3/99. ( )

I am charging $125 for the squirrel, and the guy who is doing these critters for $40, well his cost of living must be a lot lower than mine! Thanks for the answers gentlemen; this is the most valuable tool I have found yet.

Tony Dingess

John, You Need to Get Over It

This response submitted by George Roof on 12/3/99. ( )

A squirrel by any other name still climbs trees, eats nuts and breeds all year. Sounds like some of the deer hunters I know. But you guys who talk this "art" stuff truly amaze me. We want to be something we aren. Granted John, you show your art in many ways, but you have yet to grow a single hair or see through any eyes other than your on. This is taxidermists talking to taxidermists. Get over that ego problem and lets be honest with each other. "THERE IS MORE THAN ONE WAY TO SKIN A CAT". That in itself speaks volumes. Take a picture from across the room of the best squirrel you ever did and take one of the $150 DP one on my wall. I defy you and any of the other artists out there to find a difference. Some things are worth fighting over, but this "every thing is a trophy to someone" doesn't mean that I have to spend the tedious labor of following the exact steps of the experts to get to the end of a job.

I'm from the old school, but my reputation only counts to the customers I serve. The only ribbons I value have pictures of dead presidents on them and there is very little work of my own hanging on "I love Me" walls in my house. I don't need to be reminded how much better my work is today versus what it was yesterday. Yesterday was too long ago and there's nothing I can do to change that. My work is guaranteed for LIFE. My customers know that. They are not empty promises. In 20 years, if I'm still here, the warranty will be the same and just a valid.

Like I said, I don't sit in the choir where some of you like to preach, but I have nothing against what you say there. Just don't try to force it into my pulpit.

And to coin a phrase I've heard many times," I hope this is taken in the vein it was intended."

You Squirrely Girls

This response submitted by Leanna on 12/4/99. ( )

John, did you HEAR what Jim Tucker called the tree rats?! He called them NUT MUNCHERS.....ANNNNNDDD....he uses BUBBLE eyes! I'd get him if I were you!! I dont think I'd let THAT one slide.

And George, I don't think you have a sour tone at all, I think you have a great sense of humour! Snide, dry, funny comments! I think it's great we can all make each other laugh don't you all?

You guys all offer alot of help on here and thanks!!!

Lets put this into perspective...

This response submitted by Bill on 12/7/99. ( )

and I hope folks understand we are having fun as well as being "serious". Man I hate to have to explain that one...George has hemroids, thus the tone. Hell, I get $225 for squirrels! Sooo, I can afford to split the ears and lips and add epoxie sculpt into the ears and take the time to do nice toes. Yeah, I dont get too many squirrels at that price, but I can do more deer because of it...get the picture? Now thats how you make the money. Oh, and I like the bubble eyes too, I just like the profile. And of course, I do it in spite of Bellucci. You can tan them almost as easy as powdering them and waiting and hoping they dry. But, fancy them up and they still be tree rats...

Oh yeah, I forgot to say...

This response submitted by Bill on 12/7/99. ( )

and for just $125, I'll put the squirrel into the corner of a box and just dry him out. When he is hard, and doesnt smell any more, hes done. Now THATS a bargain!

Return to Category Menu