1. Welcome to Taxidermy.net, Guest!
    We have put together a brief tutorial to help you with the site, click here to access it.

Epic Fail

Discussion in 'Bird Taxidermy' started by JoshP, Apr 10, 2013.

  1. JoshP

    JoshP New Member

    Gave my first bird a try over the weekend. Epic fail is what I would call it. I got the skin off without a problem. When I started to flesh it I found out how easy it is to burn threw the skin. I felt like I needed to hurry because it felt like it was drying out. I made Swiss cheese of the poor thing. My question is if it feels like it is drying out can I just spray it with water or do I need to use stop rot. Thanks for your help.
  2. socalmountainman

    socalmountainman Northwestern School of Taxidermy - Class of '73

    Water in a spray bottle, twist the spray tip to "mist". It shouldn't have gotten that dry, so much fat on those ducks, the grease keeps them moist. What kinda bird was it?

  3. TWinter

    TWinter Winter taxidermy

    x2, scissor of what you can by hand and wheel lightly. It takes practice. Everyone burns holes now and then. That's what needles and thread are for. Have fun with it :)
  4. JoshP

    JoshP New Member

    It WAS mallard drake. I live in Utah it's a dyer climate I don't know if that had anything to do with it. Or if I was just worried that I needed to hurry.
  5. socalmountainman

    socalmountainman Northwestern School of Taxidermy - Class of '73

    Wow. Yeah, I live on the beach so it's different out here. You know, you could just use some hand lotion or glycerin if your a trapper. They won't hurt the skin and it will stay pliable.
  6. giveem3 steve

    giveem3 steve Member

    I dont think where you like makes the bird dry out. Im in idaho and never have a problem with the birds drying from the skinning to the fleshing wheel. If the skin does start to dry just some water will help that. Also try a little dawn in the flesh side to lessen some of the burning through. I do 300+ birds a year and i still burn through every now and then. its going to happen.

    just my 2 cents.

  7. Fleshing can be frustrating. I still hate it. A lot. Keep that skin moving & don't let it stay in one place too long. Good luck.
  8. critterstuffr

    critterstuffr New Member

    Help yourself out. Stay away from Mallards, Wood ducks and Teal. try to get your hands on a diver tuffer skin. After a few birds then try a mallard or what ever. You can also add a little dawn to the spray water it will help as will sissoring off the larger fatty parts. Good luck we've all been there. :)
  9. Keep at it. Def. takes practice! Just wait until that moment when one gets sucked out your hand and wrapped around your wheel...your heart will hit the floor! Lol
  10. huntin_justin

    huntin_justin Active Member

    I too made swiss cheese out of my first, a mallard then a woodie. Tried a few divers and wow they are much easier. I will flesh a while then wash and then flesh some more. Just dont get discoursged from tearing it up. You will be surprised once you mount it how good it looks. One trick I will use if I have a tear is to float it in water. The skin just goes back together like it should and shows you where to sew everything. Good luck
  11. JoshP

    JoshP New Member

    Thanks for all the replies. I have one more mallard, pintail and 2 snows to practice on. I wish I would have saved a few more birds. Maybe it wasn't drying out and I was over thinking it. I will keep a spray bottle close by on my next one. So I don't feel like I have to hurry. Thanks agin.
  12. JerseyJays

    JerseyJays Well-Known Member

    I notice a lot of my tears come from the back half of the duck.. In the side pocket area and tail area.

    I bought an extra fine brass wire wheel and like it, but still have 2-3 rips on each bird I do
  13. Adam Edwards

    Adam Edwards Member

    Hey Josh, I too live in Utah and i don't think the climate has to much to do with drying the skin out. I havent noticed my skins getting dry. Do you borax the skin before you flesh? It can make it feel like its drying out a bit but if you just go slow and keep fleshing all that fat will definatley keep it moist. As all these other great people have already said, spray bottle works great if you think its getting to dry. I actually soak the entire skin before i flesh because i feel it helps keep some of the fat from getting on the feathers. Best of luck with your future birds post them up when they are done! I too have some snows to do :)
  14. PJD

    PJD New Member

    ive posted on this topic before, so sorry to repeat, my fleshing idea is to pretend and actually flesh those fragile birds as if it was your own scrotem or newborn babys butt, it seriously works for me, I know im weird but think about it, you will go slower, and put alot less pressure on the skin, seems to help :-\ :eek:
  15. JerseyJays

    JerseyJays Well-Known Member

    i noticed as well... dont try to get all that membrane off... after you wash it, it will peel off.. then i gas the bird, and more peels off... it usually doesnt look too clean until after the first washing...