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Cleanly Removing Reptile Skin For Preservation

Discussion in 'Reptile Taxidermy' started by RahmanAron, Sep 21, 2019.

  1. RahmanAron

    RahmanAron New Member

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    I am working on a large lizard and was asked to try and save the skin for display alongside the cleaned skeleton. I am doing my best but I've never had to save skin before and I keep making tiny tears in it. Does anyone have a good dissection method for this? I am particularly struggling with the limbs and head. I've almost got one limb out of the skin without having to tear into the skin to get to it (going off the main ventral incision) but it's taking forever and I'm still making tiny holes. For the head I ended up having to cut down the center of the lower jaw until it meets the ventral incision in order to peel it back along the sides of the jaw and then work my way around to the back via under the skin. I'm trying to take off the skin on top of the head right now but since there is no muscle layer there really it's been incredibly difficult to separate. Any tips would be helpful.uc browser shareit appvn
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2019
  2. joeym

    joeym Jeannette & Joey @ Dunn's Falls

    I don't think its possible to skin out the skull. On gators, we don't even try. If they are mounted, the skin is preserved on the skull. Kerby Ross can give you tons of tips on this.
     

  3. Kerby Ross

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

    What kind of lizard is it? On monitors I use a scalpel to make the incision and then use my fingers to separate the skin from the carcass. Once skinned I use a serrated fleshing tool to flesh the skin. On monitors you skin the head just like any other animal. On iguanas and other lizards where the skin will not come off the top part of the head I just mold and cast the head use a reproduction head.

    :)

    Kerby...
     
    rogerswildlife and joeym like this.