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Who Else is New to Taxidermy?

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by Jeff Dufour, Jan 31, 2017.

How new are you to taxidermy?

Poll closed Feb 10, 2017.
  1. Just starting

  2. Somewhat new

  3. I've been doing it for a while

    0 vote(s)
  4. I've been doing it for a few years

  5. I've been doing it for +10 years

  1. Jeff Dufour

    Jeff Dufour Thanks to all USA Veterans and all you have done!

    I know most of you have probably been doing it for a while but i just want to know if i'm the only one on the forums that's completely new to the wonderful world of taxidermy!
  2. MrsR

    MrsR New Member

    I'm new, I've been tanning skins for a few years but just assumed taxidermy was too complex for me. But then I was given a pristine goose to eat and I thought it looked so beautiful I needed to try rather than just pluck the down out! So far I'm just at the gathering specimens and skinning and freezing stage. Once I decide what to tackle first, I'll start fleshing. Probably mammals, as I feel on home territory tanning mammal skin and the extra skinning was a breeze.

  3. Hookbender

    Hookbender New Member

    Brand new also. Always wanted to try it. Caught a 30 King salmon this summer and almost died when I heard $21-$25 an inch...$1000.00! Did some research and decided to give it a try. So far so good. Fish is skinned and mounted on form. Artificial head is attached. Working on apoxy now. Personally spoke to Rick Krane and purchased his DVD for painting. Fingers crossed, taking my time, having fun!
  4. MrsR

    MrsR New Member

    painting scares me! sculpting I'm good at, painting not so much....
  5. Mostly new :) Did a gray fox and european starling mount for a class, slowly been collecting specimens in my freezer to practice on.
    Wanting to learn tanning soon but a bit intimidated..in the mean time I've been practicing skinning on some rats I was given and have a lot more supplies I need to collect before I mount anything on my own outside of a class, but I'm getting there!
  6. Grizz208

    Grizz208 New Member

    I did my first mount almost a year ago. Still have so much to learn but having a great time learning. Done 5 deer shoulders and 1 bear so far.
  7. carver

    carver Member

    I'm new. Hobby only for now. Starting with squirrels. Hoping to to move to something larger once I can get a squirrel to look respectable.

  8. I've been wanting to try it since I was a kid when I saw those taxidermy how-to video tapes for sale in the back of Field and Stream magazines. A lot of my friends are into hunting so I seem to have an good supply of animals to practice on. Plus, if I do a good job, they get a mount for free.
  9. Jeff Dufour

    Jeff Dufour Thanks to all USA Veterans and all you have done!

    wow its so interesting to see where all you are starting i was interested in taxidermy as a kid but felt it was too hard but now i'm trying my best to get better at it and thanks for sharing everybody
  10. Rookie1971

    Rookie1971 New Member

    I've been dabbling off and on. I quit after I kept ruining my birds. Nothing to show for my efforts. Took private classes but he was a jerk. He was awesome at his craft but would take a phone call and forget about me. I waited hours, until I went home. Happened on several ocassions with no apology. So I tried myself. Did ok, but needed some support. Too much this, trouble with sewing.............So now I have the itch again. I'm a bit leery about revisiting something I quit. Or never really got started. Do I want to buy stuff again? I sold all my supplies over 10 years ago. Can I keep it simple? Right now I'm contemplating trying ducks again. Makes me nervous and happy thoughts at the same time.
  11. ugafanman

    ugafanman New Member

    New here. I've done some small things like euro mounts and antler mounts and have fallen in love with it. Hopefully going to be able to take a w/t shoulder class within the next couple months. But yes it seems to be a hard thing to get into. I wasn't met with the warmest reception from some of the other taxidermists in my area when looking for any advice and help. Had only a few willing to give me pointers and try and help me along with any advice.
  12. Tom Maul

    Tom Maul Active Member

    Hey Rookie,
    Let me begin by saying I'm no pro when it comes to birds (see what I did there?... eh...eh?), but I can put a decent bird together.
    I want to encourage you to try again. Bird taxidermy is really not that expensive to get into... or back into. Scalpel, blades, an old motor and wire wheel to make a flesher, scissors, wire snips, masking tape, electrical tape, pins, clay or epoxy, maybe some superglue, some wire, borax, dawn soap, your preference of a dryer, some paint and brushes, foam necking, hot glue gun foot injection material, syringe, cotton batting, caulk, dawn soap, eyes, body... that prolly covers the lion's share of it. You can worry about a airbrush and compressor later. You get the idea though... No $100+ items.
    The guy you spoke of did ya wrong... people like that are a dime a dozen, we all know that.... don't let him continue to affect you.
    Birds are not easy... at least I don't think so, but it's simply a matter of gaining the knowledge and then practicing over and over. If you're afraid to fail, then find another interest (lol) because you're gonna fail. That's not a big deal so long as you learn from it. I'll venture to say (can't prove it) that all the BEST bird taxidermists had more than a few failures. Expect it at first.
    My best advice to begin with... purchase a quality instructional video... or two... or three... don't know what your budget is.
    If you can afford it, get one waterfowl standing and one waterfowl flying. At BlueRibbonBirdsDVD.com Matt Smith has an excellent video. VERY pricey, But VERY good (my opinion, obviously). Page Nethercutt does a good video at taxidermytrainingunlimited.com and Stefan Savides does a decent one from Research Mannikins.
    I'm sure there are other good ones.
    Find some duck hunters that will gift you some ducks... most guys will. Don't BUY them, or barter, or trade... that's against federal law. Check migratory bird laws.
    Second best piece of advice... go to taxidermy.net/forums/ and start reading every bird thread, seriously. That's a LOT of homework which is a good thing. You're gonna learn so much. If in your practice you get stumped on something and CAN'T FIND THE ANSWER IN THE ARCHIVES, go to the bird forum or beginners and ask. The bird folks on here are an exceptional group of people.
    Also, you can join your state taxidermy association.
    Instruction from a QUALITY bird taxidermist is a wonderful option, but very pricey. Do your homework thoroughly before choosing one.
    My goose has prolly thawed some more, so I gotta get back to it, but I"d like to see you try again. Two videos, the supplies, and the archives here, the forum and some specimens should get you up and runnin. PM me if you want... gotta go.