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fish anatomy

Discussion in 'Fish Taxidermy' started by mckayla_1, Oct 8, 2007.

  1. mckayla_1

    mckayla_1 New Member

    let me start by saying that i don't claim to have any great knowledge on the subject. but i have had a 200 gallon fish tank filled with some bass bluegills and crappies for the past three years and in all the time I've spent watching the fish I began to notice how little most of the poses seen in commercial fish taxidermy and reproductions don't resemble natural body positions and actions. for instance i can't recall seeing any of my fish in a dramatic tail and head down arch diving down or up. they generally hold a fairly straight form even when change depths.

    i guess the question I'm trying to get out is this. if taxidermy is the art of recreating fish, animals, birds etc... in their natural form then why do we see so many mounts in unnatural poses.

    again I'm not trying to say I'm an expert on the fish anatomy. I'm just hoping somebody with a little more knowledge on anatomy and physiology could explain to me if the poses are possible and natural or is just the artist making the subjects pose fit his or her idea and composition.
  2. pyeager1

    pyeager1 Active Member

    The poses for commercial mounts are just that, pleasing to the majority of the general public. Those "action" poses are intended to recreate the thrashing and fighting of the fish being hooked while also showing all the "bragging" points of the fish that are pleasing to the customer. The calm, relaxed fish you are used to watching would make great poses for a competion mount showing a fish in its natural habitat. The average fisherman wants his bass mouth wide open, gills flared and fins and tail depicting action. Thats a good point you have though.

  3. because many people ude pre made forms. and they tend to be older.
    also people tend to copy other peoples fish work.
    what happens on a third generation copy of a cassette?? phhhshhshhshhhhhsh
    Copy the real fish not another Taxidermists. they may have some good methods but you may come up with better ones.
  4. 200 gallon tank is not much and don't allow for the fish to move much.

    If you spend sometime at say Bass Pro Shops you will see that some body attitude changes do happen when fish are going up and down but not much. When a fish fights on a rod and reel the actions are different.

    The front fins on trout are used to go up and down, like a canard wing on some aircraft and also for brakes. Pelvics are left and right and rotate for this along with the fronts. Dorsals help too but not alot they are for vertical stabilization. Look at the color on salmons fins and this will tell you where the fin position is most of the time.

    Bass use the pect fins for brakes and up an down attitude also, but they have the pelvics for turning and yes they to rotate some.
    But you can see fins can do different things along with fish attitude and not all fins extend at the sametime, fish can work each fin individually.

    Tails turn a bit but mostly for power and speed.

    Most clients don't want a fish in the resting position or just swimming position they want action, maybe it's a macho thing.

    So mount them however you want. Either way is copying the real fish. I have been scuba diving for many years and put some time in just watching fish and feeding them, to the point of even using hooked bait underwater and yes the fish will do what many taxidermist depict as action mounts.

    It's best for you to figure out what you like the best and do that.
  5. BIGUN

    BIGUN Member

    try videoing some feeding bass in a large environment with lot's of competition (or just do it at Bass Pro Shops during feeding time- he he). Then watch each frame of the video and "Viola" action poses do happen- you just didn't know it. Dave
  6. I think what he is referring to is the Horseshoe bend of older fish mounts.
    I still see this from time to time but not often, as the newer forms are moving away from this.
    Something I will note. 90% of my customers go with a relaxed pose, of that 60% choose a closed mouth. :eek:
    It depends strongly on how you sell it and what you have in your showroom.
  7. ArtistcAnglerInc.

    ArtistcAnglerInc. New Member

    I agree completely with you guys. Just to play devils advocate I'll say one of the main reasons people go for these dramatic poses and postures, is because they are picturing their fish during the "fight" ie..leaping from the water shaking its head vigurously...making a last second run from the boat ( diving poses)

    So i agrre, but I also see where a person may want that extreme action. I think alot of folks who get their fish mounted only see fish during these encounters and dont truely get as much time to admire and apreciate the subtleties the way we Taxis do! With all that said, I still agree with you guys....