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Fatty Mallard Nightmare

Discussion in 'Bird Taxidermy' started by Raspy, Jan 20, 2010.

  1. Raspy

    Raspy New Member

    Last night I skinned my 3rd Mallard (my 7th bird skinning) and it was fatty nightmare. There was at least a half inch of fat and the skin was thinner than tissue paper. It seemed as if it went strait from fat to feathers when fleshing, not to mention is was full of pin feathers. There was so much fat dripping off my fleshing wheel box it made me gag a couple times ;D. I thought my gag reflex was conditioned better than that since I have started maceration on a deer skull :-\.

    Anyways with that said, as much trouble as it gave me at first, and after renaming that damn bird a few hundered times, I finally feel like I harnessed the feel or "touch" of the wire wheel. After burning a few holes in the back, the fat and flesh just started easily melting away in small layers and I finally feel like I got this bird 110% clean. Now I think I might go back and hit the other 6 birds again just to make sure. I learned a lot on this bird, It gave me fits but I hung with it, I have some sewen to do but I am happy with the outcome. I cant wait to get it mounted up.

    Thanks to everyone on this site for all the great information you provide. Reading everyones tips and advice got me to this point. I have been reading and studying here for about a year, and you guys and gals are a great inspiration to a beginner like myslef.
     
  2. full fan

    full fan New Member

    Here is something I do to all my birds. After it is skinned out I will coat the skin with borax then refreeze. When I'm ready to flesh the skin & fat has some time to firm up. Then do a pre fleshing with you . Keep a water bottle on hand when you use the wire wheel to moisten the skin.
    The wire wheel is all about "feel & sound" well to me it is all feel for I am tone death. :(
     

  3. Raspy

    Raspy New Member

    Thanks for the advice full fan. Keeping the skin moist does help. Sometimes I will wash the bird once and then hit with the wheel again. Now that you mention it, the wheel is about sound too. I now know that sound it makes right before its too late and burns a hole ;D
     
  4. birdgirl

    birdgirl full service taxidermy, specializing in waterfowl

    After all the ducks I have wheeled, I would have to say the 5 worst in terms of super fat and super fragile are in order of difficulty: teal, mallard, pintail, woody, black duck, you will get a feel for the wheel the more ducks you do and yes it still can make me gag too.
     
  5. I remove as much fat as I can by hand. First with scissors and then VERY CAREFELLY with a scalpel. Then I rub dawn into them and let them soak in cold water for a few minutes. Then hit the fleshing wheel. Comes off really easily then.
     
  6. Raspy

    Raspy New Member

    Jan..That is another thing I learned on this bird....I shaved half the fat off with a scapel and lanced the other half and used scissors to snip closer to the skin before hitting the wire wheel. Like I said, I hated that bird but I learned a lot from it. Thanks for everyones tips ;)