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First Time Bird Maceration

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by Ouliana Nikolaeva-Hir, May 26, 2020.

  1. Ouliana Nikolaeva-Hir

    Ouliana Nikolaeva-Hir New Member

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    Hi all, I am new to the forum and new to taxidermy. I mostly collect bones on hikes and have never macerated anything before. I found a dead bird that was completely in tact and so I've been trying to macerate it. I started on May 11th and from doing more research I'm not sure if this is the best way to de-fleshing the bird to get the bones. I live in a family neighborhood with pets so I am worried about them accessing the water I pour off. I did not remove the hide or meat from the bird before placing it in the water. Overall I made a lot of rookie mistakes and I was wondering if anyone can help me get the bones from this bird or let me know if this is a lost cause and I should dispose of the bird deep in the woods.
     
  2. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    If you dig a hole in the dirt, you can gently pour off the smelly water and then bury it. No problems with pets. The water needs to be heated to make the process work. If you put it in feathers and all it will still work but it's going to be a much bigger mess locating the bones for the final cleaning. The skin, internal organs and most of the flesh should have been removed first.
     

  3. Ouliana Nikolaeva-Hir

    Ouliana Nikolaeva-Hir New Member

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    Do the flesh and feathers still need to be manually removed or will the bacteria eat it away? Will I still be able to re articulate the bones or will they be too fragile?
     
  4. Aurelien-

    Aurelien- New Member

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    Hi! I started with birds, and they are not that hard actually, I think. If you just macerate, it won't damage the bones, that's why maceration is so great! Do you know the species? Or at least the size of your specimen? Definitely, the more you put in the jar, the bigger the mess will be! But it shouldn't be a problem :)
     
  5. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    The feathers will not rot and just make a soggy, stinky mess that you will have to dig through to find your bones. Depending on your bird, some of the bones will be quite small and difficult to find. If you leave the beak sheath in the rotting water it will dissolve and be damaged (or vanish). The outer beak covering should have been removed and put aside as soon as it was loose enough to pull off. What kind of bird is it?
     
  6. Ouliana Nikolaeva-Hir

    Ouliana Nikolaeva-Hir New Member

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    I'm not sure the type of bird it's small though like a finch or robin. I'm debating taking it into the woods and burying it in a plastic container with some holes to let bugs through.
     
  7. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    There are bones in that that will be extremely small. They probably will be lost in that process and you will not have a complete skeleton. This would be a fair practice project though. If you find another in the future, remove the skin, feathers, internal organs and as much as the flesh that you can. When you macerate it that way, you will retail the entire skeleton.