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Preserving A Marlin Blue Eye

Discussion in 'Fish Taxidermy' started by marlineyezee, Feb 4, 2020.

  1. marlineyezee

    marlineyezee New Member

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    Hi y'all!

    I'm going to be completely honest and say I know nothing about taxidermy and I've come here because I desperately need help with preserving a pacific blue marlin eye that I caught. The fish got away, but I had her hooked in the eye and her eye landed on deck.

    Anyway, I have visited with taxidermists in my area as well as done research online and I can't seem to get a good idea of what can be done. I talked to someone who said I could have the eye freeze dried and then suspended in resin. Only problem is he doesn't have the equipment to freeze dry it. I stopped by another spot today and the kind lady told me that freeze drying the eye would make it shrivel and it would look bad. The outer part is super hard like a rock, but I guess there's moisture there? I want the eye to be preserved in its current shape, but I would also love to be able to hold it. So that means that putting the eye in formaldehyde in a jar is kind of a last resort. Does anyone have any ideas on what can be done? And if so, do you know someone who can do it??? Is there something I should be considering that I'm missing??

    Also I'm so sorry if this post is in the wrong spot or if I'm breaking any rules. Like I said, I know nothing about taxidermy, but this was my very first time fishing and the eye is such a neat prize that I so badly want to preserve! Thank you all so much for y'all's help!
     
  2. 13 point

    13 point Well-Known Member

    It really can’t be done , especially the way you want it , to be able to handle it and such . If you would have caught the fish would you have had it mounted??? If yes then that would have been a reproduction so , this is what I would do if you brought it to me . I would call Tohickon eye company and sent it to them to duplicate into a repo . Best of all worlds
     
    msestak and George like this.

  3. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Avoid formaldehyde but you can use alcohol. Find a container large enough to hold it and enough alcohol to cover it completely. Submerge it in the alcohol (get denatured alcohol) and I would also use a fine hypodermic needle to inject the eye in various spots where the tissue is thicker. As it sits in the alcohol, it may start to distort a little as water is replaced. Inject a little more alcohol into it to plump it up again. Keep it in the alcohol and it will be fine. It will not keep the color. You could order a glass eye from the company above that will be color correct to help with your memory of it. Tohickon eye is top of the line and they could do a custom glass eye for you.
     
  4. byrdman

    byrdman Well-Known Member

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    you can cast it in resin without freeze drying it
     
  5. crablover

    crablover Well-Known Member

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  6. crablover

    crablover Well-Known Member

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  7. crablover

    crablover Well-Known Member

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    The eye of pelagic fish,are similar to an egg. Soft inner eye material surrounded by a hard bony orbit. Clean off all soft material from inside and outside of the eye shell. Wash the soak a few days in borax and water. Remove, rinse and dry.
     
  8. Nicolaj

    Nicolaj New Member

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  9. Nicolaj

    Nicolaj New Member

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    You could try removing all extraneous material, fixing the briefly in formaldehyde, or alcohol if you must, but formaldehyde is better - if the former a few hours will do, then soak the eye in water to remove the excess formaldehyde, If it’s the later several days at least would be needed. Then put the eye in glycerine to store it. This will help maintain any colour and preserve it while keeping it malleable. You could also “plasticise” by taking it out of the glycerine after 1-4 weeks (depending on size and density - I’ve no idea how big a marlin eye is :)), blotting off excess glycerine, then putting it in a cotton bag full of cornstarch (yes, cornstarch!) for a good while. Then brush if the cor starch - a rather painstaking business - and voila, a plasticised eye (I’m sure there will be some doubters re this process, however once I’ve remembered where I found it I’ll post a link to the Egyptian veterinarian academic who came up with the process. And I’ve done it to a number of my diaphonized specimens and it’s amazingly successful!)
     
  10. crablover

    crablover Well-Known Member

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    Just curious how any of the above posters can give advice on the preservation of Marlin eye if they have never seen one or held one. A pelagic eye is not like any other fish eye The inner soft eye sits inside a hard bony shell. The eye is not round, sits flush with the head, no bulge,and has a unique pup;e shape. Hawks and Owls have the same eye structure.