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Ok.. I thought I'd post my question here. What should you do if you get an animal that you would like to have mounted? Remember, I'm a real beginner and i'll be field dressing a deer for the first time. If I get lucky and land something big I don't want to screw it up. Also, what would be the process for other animals (fox, bobcat, coyote, etc.) where meat isn't harvested?

thanks
 

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VECtor Custom Calls
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If you're getting a full body mount done on an animal, it needs to stay fully intact. I've never heard of a taxidermist that didn't want to skin an animal themselves that was going to be mounted.

As for the deer, I'll let someone else explain that. I prefer European mounts.

Parker
 

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If you're wanting a shoulder mount on a deer, field dress it and be very careful about splitting the sternum too far. If you can do it I wouldn't split it at all. After that you would want to get it skinned asap, being sure not to cut holes in the hide, especially once you get to the front shoulders.
Skin it down as far as you can on the neck then whack the neck off, you'll have to leave some neck and meat in there more than likely. Then if you know where you are going to have it mounted I would take it to the taxidermist immediately if possible. If not you should fold the hide skin side to skin side and freeze the whole thing.
Not alot to it really. Main things are don't cut up the hid and get it either frozen or to the taxidermist asap.
Once the taxidermist has it all you need to do is decide on the mount you want and wait...and be ready to open your wallet!
 

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Befor u take the cape off you wil want to get meshurments of the deer. Sone oen ehre can explain where to take the meshurments from or ask the taxadermist you gogin to sue to explain it to you.
 

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Alot of taxidermist won't mind caping the deer for you since you haven't done it or seen it done before. Others might charge you a small fee but it will be worth it to have a good looking mount. The important thing is not cutting through the rib cage while field dressing the deer. Just reach your arm up there and pull out all the organs. You will find the heat feels pretty good on cold days. As for other animals just wrap them up tight in a trash bag and put them in the freezer until you can get them to the taxidermist.
 

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Thats the ticket!! Get ELBOW DEEP in that chest cavity to cut the trachea!!!

Also, if you have butcher cape it out (experience talking here) make sure 1. They know what they are doing and 2. Don't put salt on it. It will shrink the hide and the taxidermist will yell at you.
 
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