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Getting Into Taxidermy

Discussion in 'The Taxidermy Industry' started by McCoy Taxidermy, Jul 3, 2019.

  1. McCoy Taxidermy

    McCoy Taxidermy Member

    I have a lot of good taxidermist in my area, and was curious on how to go about this. I went to taxidermy school 9 years ago but been out of it a while. I see a lot of taxidermist on fb working with other taxidermist in area or learning all kinds of techniques from other taxidermist in their state. How do you go about doing this.
  2. Fallenscale

    Fallenscale Active Member

    Friend ship
    thepaintedliving and magicmick like this.

  3. rogerswildlife

    rogerswildlife Rogers Wildlife Taxidermy Tommy Rogers

    Join your state taxidermist association.
    Richs Taxidermy likes this.
  4. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    One word taxidermist often use tell me a lot about their character. That word is "competition". If the guy across town is your competition, then I can almost bet you do shoddy work. As a kid, I got tossed out of taxidermy shops for asking questions. Years later. One of those old guys asked me how my work looked better than his. I told him it was, unlike him throwing people out. I helped people out. He said "How did that make you better?" I told him that anytime you tried to make someone better, your own work tended to improve. When I closed the shop last year. I'd met, talked to, and offered the shops around me any help they might need. As a result, when I forgot to reorder scalpel blades, a phone call to that friend made the problem go away. I learned as much (or more) from them as they did from me. You can't possibly mount every duck and deer in your state. They aren't your competitors, they are your peers. (And yes, you'll always have an ass or two, but for the most part, people are gregarious and invaluable alliances can be formed. Join your state association. If you dont have one, form one.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2019
  5. rogerswildlife

    rogerswildlife Rogers Wildlife Taxidermy Tommy Rogers

    Very well said George!
    Lake's Taxidermy likes this.
  6. Jerry Huffaker

    Jerry Huffaker Well-Known Member

    Agree with the previous posts, Join you state and neighboring state associations, Go to Nationals, UTA and the world show.
  7. Dave York

    Dave York Well-Known Member

    State shows are great meeting places. Walking into someone’s neighboring shop could be met with a cold shoulder. Meeting at a show is just a better place. Buying someone a beverage and talking at a show is a much better way. Going into another person’s shop and asking how he mounted something could also get a cold response. At a show I’ve never met with any negative treatment when asking questions.
    At our show they always auction off training opportunities with someone from the state that does exceptional work. Usually they aren’t expensive and a great way to get to know someone as well as great training.
    magicmick likes this.
  8. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Sadly what you said about dropping in is prevalent and still true in this nutty profession. Just remember my story. Guys who acted that way with me were placed on a mental list. Eventually this kind of guy disappears within a few years. I've had them later call me and I wasn't very tactful. I met their request by reminding them and telling them that with a more professional attitude, I could have and would have helped sooner.
  9. Jerry Huffaker

    Jerry Huffaker Well-Known Member

    The only thing you might be aware of , if the taxidermist is a full timer just dropping in to learn something isn't a good thing to do. Call in advance and ask if they would be willing to give some lessons or tips, they might even need some help. Just dropping in and taking up hours of our time asking questions gets in the way of production , every minute you delay the taxidermist is a minute he has to stay late to get the work done he missed while talking. My point is be respectful of the taxidermists time, set up a meeting and you'll get a much more receptive response.
  10. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Absolutely Jerry. I learned NEVER to drop in for help. If you want to drop in, make it a social call and be sure to reassure the taxidermist it's a social visit just to let him know you're around if he might need anything. Friendships grow from giving, not from taking.
  11. Rick Carter

    Rick Carter Administrator

    I’m trying to get out of taxidermy. Raising prices hasn’t worked. I need to drop my cellphone in the lake and move to a place where they can’t find me.
    rogerswildlife and Kerby Ross like this.
  12. Kerby Ross

    Kerby Ross KSU - Class of '83; U.S. Army - Infantry (83-92)

    Just hide out in Vegas!


    rogerswildlife likes this.
  13. Move to Vegas you won't be able to find yourself,the new mile high city
  14. joeym

    joeym Jeannette & Joey @ Dunn's Falls

    The sad thing about taxidermy is that it's a business that cannot be sold. It takes half a lifetime to build it up, then you are all worn out, with a shop adjacent to your home. If it were a mini-storage, car wash, or convenience store there would be a nice windfall by selling out at the end of you career. Oh well, my youngest son needs a job...guess I'll be doing this as long as I'm alive and able.
    Ron B, rogerswildlife and Fallenscale like this.
  15. Rick Carter

    Rick Carter Administrator

    I cleared more money in Vegas last week than I make from mounting a dozen deer. Still way too chicken to risk much. Lol
    rogerswildlife and Kerby Ross like this.