The two most
commonly asked questions of taxidermists are:
"How much?" and "How long?"
craftsmanship and artistry has an affect on both
of these questions. These pages are here to help
you recognize what makes a quality mount and to
aid in your selection of a taxidermist. Quality
taxidermy, whether fur, fish, or fowl, requires
both knowledge and time. Kits are available to
anyone desiring to mount an animal, just as
paint-by-number kits are on the market.
The question is, would you rather have a
paint-by-number or a Terry Redlin hanging in
your home? It is only natural that the
knowledge and talent of an individual
taxidermist would affect the price of their
work. They have worked long and hard to
develop their skills.
Quality is also a factor affecting how long it
takes to have your work completed. Many
variables are involved in determining
"turn-around" time including,
1) amount of work backlog,
2) whether the taxidermist is full- or
3) whether there are employees or some of the
work is wholesaled out to another taxidermist,
4) the actual time spent working on your trophy.
Remember that really good work takes longer than
sloppy work this applies to taxidermy as much as
anything else. It takes time to meticulously
flesh and properly tan skins. If insufficient
time is allowed for drying, finishing and paint
work can crack. It takes time to properly detail
anatomically correct eyes, nose, and feet and do
a great paint job. The old adage, "you get what
you pay for" often applies to taxidermy work.
Don't be afraid to shop around for a good
taxidermist. Take some time and visit different
taxidermy shops. Ask questions, look around and
compare work. The best guides to good work are
live animals. Bring photos of live animals and
compare them to mounts you are looking at.
Quality taxidermy looks good and should last
a lifetime when cared for properly. Take the
time to invest in a mount which you will find
joy in looking at for years to come.