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Taxidermists Terms to Know

Taxidermy is a unique and interesting profession that many pet owners and hunters require at some time or another. As you may know, taxidermists specialize in preparing, stuffing and mounting the skins of animals. You supply these experts with a dead deer, bear, fish, or bird, and he or she will prepare it to look lifelike. Special schooling is required for anyone who wants to learn taxidermy. While hunting often results in these mounted animals, some people choose to have their pets preserved as well. Here are a few useful terms to know about the subject.

  • Freeze Dry – This is a method of rapidly freezing something at very low temperatures in order to preserve it. Once frozen, the object is subjected to a high-powered vacuum tool that removes any ice by sublimation.
  • Fleshing – A process that involves removing all red meat from the deer, bear or other animal. A machine or scalpel is often utilized to do this. If a fish or bird is the subject, this meat must all be removed as well.
  • Salting – A specific table is often used to apply salt to the animal. This is done after the fleshing of the raccoon, wolf, or elk. This helps pull moisture off the animal and works like a dehydration process. It often takes around six weeks.
  • Skinning Gambrel – A frame with chains and hooks that are used to suspend a dead animal in the air. This allows a taxidermist to skin the animal. While there is no special schooling required to use a gambrel, there is a certain process that must be learned.
  • Tail Stripping Tool – A hand tool that enables you to strip the skin from an animal tail in one easy motion. Many hunting supply shops and taxidermy product dealers offer these devices.
    National Taxidermists Association
    Green Forest, AR 72638
    An organization that would endorse education, solidarity, and standards for the entire taxidermy industry to embrace. Our association focuses on the needs and interests of the taxidermy industry.
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    Acord Taxidermy
    1125 Bow Hill Road, Christiansburg, VA 24073
    Licensed, full time taxidermy shop. We mount big game, small game, fish & exotics. No bird work except turkey fans and beards. Your choice of lifesize, half, and shoulder mounts.
    (540) 382-9109
    Woods & Waters Taxidermy
    1180 Jennings Town Road, Crewe, VA 23930
    Virginia taxidermy services. Deer, bucks, doe, bear, fish, ducks, geese, small game, novelties. Repair and cleaning game mounts.25 years experience. My mounts fool even mother nature.
    (2) Reviews Write a review
    (434) 645-9117
    User Review: "Johns work would fool mother nature. He can skillfully any animal where many taxidermists cannot." - robert (CT)
    Artistic Taxidermy
    2117 Beach St, Arlington, VA 22201
    Taxidermist- for 40 years. Do American and African pets. Also profession- for Quality museum.
    (703) 247-2906
    Ron Sprouse Taxidermy Studio
    1927 Troxel Gap Rd, Craigsville, VA 24430
    (1) Review Write a review
    (540) 997-0101
    User Review: "Ron has done many mounts for me over the years. I've been very pleased and his mounts look so lifelike. I drive about an..."
    Cregger Taxidermy
    1183 Berea Rd, Wytheville, VA 24382
    Our local taxidermy studio offers mount services for all types of animals, from deer to fish. We will stuff and preserve your prized hunting trophies.
    (276) 228-5374
    Fish Art Taxidermy
    9801 Dacono Dr, Richmond, VA 23228
    (1) Review Write a review
    (804) 262-1153
    User Review: "One of the best taxidermist around! I had two fish completed here and both came back better than I could have ever expected..." - Jeff (VA)
    Appleberry Mountain Taxidermy & Meat Processing
    5046 Green Creek Rd, Schuyler, VA 22969
    (1) Review Write a review
    (434) 831-2232
    User Review: "He is the best around that I have seen. Does excellent work. His mounts looks the same 20 years down the road as they did..." - Travis (VA)
    Nicely's Taxidermy
    2306 Evergreen Rd, Covington, VA 24426
    (1) Review Write a review
    (540) 962-6995
    User Review: "All of the workers do such a magnificent job! keep up the great work!"
    Smith's Taxidermy Studio
    2201 Cumberland Gap Rd, Newport, VA 24128
    (1) Review Write a review
    (540) 544-7165
    User Review: "Ask anyone and they will tell you smith's taxidermy studio is the best around."
    J & P Taxidermy
    Manassas, VA 20110
    (1) Review Write a review
    (703) 330-5513
    User Review: "They did a very good job on my canadian bear at a fair price."
    Leatherwood Taxidermy
    15207 Carrollton Blvd, Carrollton, VA 23314
    Professional taxidermist services. All big and small game. Quality mounts, custom work. Big and small game, fish, birds, deer, duck, bear, fox, bobcat. Skull cleaning services also available.
    (757) 329-3175
    Waln's Taxidermy
    10661 Elk Run Rd, Catlett, VA 20119
    Taxidermy services for all your small and big game needs. Shoulder mount to full body mounts. We can help you with your big game, fish, and birds at affordable rates.
    (540) 272-6610
    Trophy Keepers Taxidermy
    59 Cedar Lane, Buchanan, VA 24066
    Schedule with this local taxidermist, only the best in preserving your big or small game, we can also make trophies, plaques and much more, for more information, call today.
    (1) Review Write a review
    (540) 473-3469
    User Review: "Done a excellent job on a rainbow trout for my son was very pleased with the work."
    Old Forge Taxidermy
    9006 Boulevard Rd, Providence Forge, VA 23140
    Full-service taxidermy studio offers high quality craftsmanship and a wide array of services. They can work with anything from big game to fishing trophies.
    (804) 966-8383
    Deer Tales Taxidermy
    7531 Webb Road, Boones Mill, VA 24065
    With nearly 20 years of experience, our taxidermy studio uses the best materials to preserve your trophies for a lifetime of enjoyment. We specialize in freeze dry, stuffing, and sculpted preservation.
    (1) Review Write a review
    (540) 776-6281
    User Review: "If you care about what your animals look like check this taxidermist out.You won't be disapointed!"

    Taxidermists are professionals who prepare, stuff, and mount animals of all kinds. Taxidermy is an art that has been around for several centuries. Although the first American book on this practice was published in the mid 1800s, other parts of the world have been embracing taxidermy for much longer. It is an art form that typically involves wildlife such as large fish, birds, deer, bears, tigers and other animals people kill while hunting. Although some individuals prefer to bury their pets after they pass on, other people choose to have their cat or dog stuffed, preserved, and mounted. This may involve processes like tanning the hide, painting artificial eyes, and sewing the skin of the dead animal. Certain supplies are required for this task. Sometimes a taxidermist has to freeze dry specific parts like the skull, choose a certain size of glass eye, and use artificial teeth that are carved. This requires a certain level of schooling and training. Depending on the bear, bird, deer or fish involved, it takes a certain period of time for the lifelike animal to be sculpted properly. When a hunting trophy or pet is completed, it may resemble a mannequin or dummy to some degree. Resort to the internet to learn a lot more about taxidermy and mounting wild animals. Although this is a unique process, there are a number of websites that can offer great details on this practice. If you have a specific animal in mind, try doing a little research on that species in particular.
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