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Paddle fish skulls

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by adriane123, Apr 21, 2013.

  1. This will be my first year doing paddle fish skulls for european mounts using my beetles.
    Can anyone talk me through the process? Do I flesh any of the bill? Do they clean just fine using beetles? Any input or good advice would be appreciated.
  2. EastonWest

    EastonWest What we do in North Dakota, STAYS here.

    I'm currently on my third one. Very very oily fish. My advice is to get as much of the gill tissue off as you can or your going to have a stinky sloppy mess in the beetle tank. The jaw is very loose and most "bones" aren't connected so I usually only clean the top part of the head and the bill. They look very cool. I normally clean off as much meat from the head as i can by hand, being very careful as they bone is very fragile. Usually don't do any prep on the bill besides drying out in front of a fan as it's a network of honeycomb looking bones. After cleaning as much by hand as I can I hang it up and let it dry in front of a fan overnight. be sure to keep a container underneath it while doing this as these things seep and leak oil the whole time. Beetles usually clean them fairly quickly. Usually doesn't take much degreasing. I don't like soaking them for more than a couple days at a time because the bone is actually cartilage and damages easily. I whiten using 40 volume peroxide and basic white.

  3. Thank you so much for the advice!
  4. Do you skin the bill before feeding the beetles?? Seems it would be hard to skin!!??