When it comes to taxidermy, proper preparation of your deer is paramount to ensure a stunning and long-lasting mount. Every season, taxidermists often encounter capes that are unusable due to various factors. By avoiding mistakes in the field and following professional tips, you can ensure that you properly prepare your deer for taxidermy in the best possible way. In this guide, we will walk you through the essential steps to follow when preparing your deer for taxidermy.
The First Step To Prepare Your Deer For Taxidermy
The first step in preparing your deer for taxidermy begins immediately after the kill – field dressing. It is crucial to field dress your trophy as soon as possible to preserve its quality. Start by making a careful incision in the belly area, being mindful not to cut into the chest or brisket region. When reaching into the chest cavity to retrieve the heart, ensure you stop at the rib cage. This prevents any further damage to vital areas and helps maintain the integrity of the cape. Additionally, take extra care to avoid any blood, dirt, or debris from coming into contact with the animal’s fur.
Protecting The Hide Of Your Deer For Taxidermy
After field dressing, the next step is packing out your deer from the hunting site. Deer fur is fragile and prone to breakage due to its hollow nature, which provides insulation. To avoid damaging the fur, it is crucial to pack out your animal with utmost care. Utilize a tarp or similar protective wrappings to shield the deer from dirt, rocks, and brush. By cautiously removing the deer from the woods or mountainside, you can preserve the hide in a condition suitable for mounting.
Preserving The Meat & Fur Of Your Deer
To maintain the quality of your deer for both consumption and taxidermy purposes, it is essential to cool it down rapidly. Quick cooling prevents the meat from spoiling and hinders the fur from slipping. Make arrangements to drop off your deer promptly to a reliable meat processor, ensuring they are aware that you have caped it for taxidermy. If you plan to cape the deer yourself, do so as soon as possible to allow heat to escape and avoid any spoilage.
Safeguarding Your Deer’s Hide From Moisture
Once you have caped the deer, it is crucial to store the cape properly to avoid any moisture-related issues. Although it is essential to keep the cape in a freezer or cooler, it is equally vital to prevent it from becoming damp. Wet fur can foster the growth of bacteria, making it susceptible to slippage. To safeguard against moisture, consider double bagging the cape with dry trash bags or using other moisture-repellent materials to ensure it stays dry and intact.
When In Doubt, Seek A Professional
While there are abundant resources available online, including videos and diagrams, that explain the process of removing hide and capes, it is important to acknowledge your own comfort level and expertise. If you feel unsure or lack confidence in preparing the deer properly, you should seek professional assistance. Contact your trusted taxidermist, who can guide you through the process or offer their services to expertly prepare your deer for taxidermy.
Preparing Your Deer For Taxidermy Success
Properly preparing your deer for taxidermy is essential for achieving a stunning and long-lasting mount. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you will be equipped with the knowledge and techniques necessary to ensure your deer is in optimal condition for the taxidermy process. Remember to field dress your deer swiftly and carefully, pack it out with caution, cool it down rapidly, protect the cape from moisture, and seek professional assistance if needed. By adhering to these guidelines, you are guaranteed to have a successful taxidermy experience and showcase your trophy deer in the best possible way.