Taxidermy - Equipment and Steps for Stuffing Birds and Mammals 101.

Updated: Mar 23, 2019

Taxidermy can be used for various purposes, including for studies and decoration. The minimum equipment required for taxidermy of birds and mammals are: a freezer, table(preferably formica, marble or granite, to facilitate cleaning) surgical gloves, scalpel, tweezers, scissors, galvanized wire, cutting pliers, cotton non-hydrophilic, thread and needle, string or cord, punch skin, analog or digital scale, syringes, hammer, drill, trena, artificial eyes, ink and brush, formaldehyde, sodium tetraborate, paraformaldehyde, alum Potassium and Sodium Chloride (table salt).

When performing taxidermy, it is essential that hunters follow a set of appropriate techniques and steps for the preparation and preservation of the skin of birds and mammals to be stuffed.

Steps to follow:

1. The first step is to dissect an animal and then apply a skinning technique. In order to remove the skin efficiently, the hunter cuts from the neck to the tail through the stomach.

2. Once the skin is removed and  dehydrated with salt or a powder called borax, let it stand for 24 to 48 hours. It should be stored in a cool, dry place, preferably closed, where it is not exposed to the sun. Next hunters should remove the water that may have got into the skin so that it does not spoil it.

3. Once the skin is dry, you must use a rehydration method. After applying this technique a hunter can then continue tanning his specimen in three steps: soaking, staining and tanning.

4. A sculpture of the animal is then created by imitating the animal in its natural surroundings. For example, if the animal is a hunter, it would be interesting to have it in attack position.

5. Then the body sculpture is covered with the skin. Use sewing techniques which allow for thread to go unnoticed. Then continue with the most difficult part that gives the prepared corpse the appearance of life: placement of eyes, skin and synthetic mouth.

6. When a hunter has finished applying the skin, the drying process is almost complete. The last step is to dry after brining and retouch the color and/or any damaged area.

Attention: The tanning of the skin is a technique that applies only to mammals. Stuffed animals whose skin has been tanned, can be cleaned with a slightly damp cloth if necessary.

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