Going to give it a try on some squirrels - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-10-2012, 02:14 PM Thread Starter
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Going to give it a try on some squirrels

Well i have been practicing skinning my squirrels as if i were going to mount them. I have boxaxed 2 hides for flytying and had no issues with the hair falling out or anything yet.

I have been doing some research on wrapping bodies. I want to give it a try. Any suggestions on what supplies are cheap and effective i can start with. I figured there are most likely supplies at craft stores and such to use. I figured squirrels will be an easy start and i can skin themm in the field for ease of skin removal.

I hope to put up some pictures soon. Any help will be appreciated. I want to get good enough to try the trophy fox squirrel i just got but too affraid to start with him.

How much do you taxidermist usually charge for a squirrel mount. How many of you use foam forms and how many wrap?

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-10-2012, 07:24 PM
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Re: Going to give it a try on some squirrels

go to http://www.taxidermy.com

great supply company. you can also go to http://www.taxidermy.net

they have a lot of tutorials in the forum section.

the squirrel kits come with everything except a form, you can order the correct size seperate.

Taxidermists usually charge over $200.00 for a squirrel, they are a lot of work.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-10-2012, 08:53 PM
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Re: Going to give it a try on some squirrels

If you want to wrap the body you need to keep the carcass for your guide. In fact you need to keep the leg bones too, which you clean well and run a wire down and remake the leg structure.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-11-2012, 11:25 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Going to give it a try on some squirrels



So far this is what i have come up with. I am making a wire frame skeleton out of wrapped floral wire. I have picked up some galvanized wire as well to reinforce my skeleton. I bought some batting. I wanted to try and learn the old fashioned way before using the forms and such. I bought the squirrel kit and its tough to match the form. I am a mechanical designer and have a mircometer so i plan on transfering the measurments from the carcass. So far i have about 1.5 hours into it. I plan on finishing the skeleton on my lunch break so i can begin the body tonight.

I carved the head out of some foam and hit it on the grinder to get a match. I plan on sanding it down to smooth and exact fit. I plan on rebuilding the eye and nose area with clay.

I have 2 questions. When i make the head should i cut lines to allow tucking the lips in. DO you just pin the lips to the foam and it will dry on it. I will be using borax for the preservative on the mount.

I figured learning the old fashioned way is always a good place to start. I have eyes from the squirrel kit i bought but i am ordering more this week. WHat size and type of eyes do you commonly use on your squirrel mounts.

Wish me luck and thanks for the insight.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-11-2012, 03:56 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Going to give it a try on some squirrels



here is my status as of lunch break. I picked up the 14 ga wire this morning. I reinforced the skeleton i have now. I found another method that doesnt require all of the wrapping. I am just practicing for now but i like the rigidness of the skeleton and can pose it in many ways. I think i may do the pose in the background. I believe i will try to do a mount with just an average grey or red squirrle first before i ruin my trophy fox squirrel. I will keep you posted on wrapping the body and setting the head.

Contemplating buying the wrapping bodies dvd but just want to see if i can do it myself first and see what i can come up with.

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-11-2012, 03:57 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Going to give it a try on some squirrels

I can see the skeleton is all wrong from that pose right now. I am wondering how i will make the joints look correct. I see where foxtrapper says to keep the bones.

Note: i did not put the head on the whole way yet either just seeing what it would look like. I know he looks like an ermin or weasle right now. LOL

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-11-2012, 04:08 PM
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Re: Going to give it a try on some squirrels

google images of squirrel skeletons, there are some for each kind, that should help with placement.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-11-2012, 09:16 PM
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Re: Going to give it a try on some squirrels

You may really want to get the Kulis video series DVD of Jerome Bennema showing how to do wrapped bodies for squirrels, a mouse, and an ermine. It was 39.99 plus shipping when I bought it.

Here is the body I made for a weasel, and used original skull which I cleaned up. i didn't use the leg bones, but I skinned the weasel and removed the legs at the joints and traced them, then took wire and bent them to match the joints, and used the skinned legs as reference for rebuilding the muscle.



And here's the finished mount. I had to bend it the other way due to some slippage of fur on one side of the belly. I did tan the hide fully, just that these lil things are full of bad gut bacteria.

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-11-2012, 10:22 PM
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Re: Going to give it a try on some squirrels

Here is a video on the traditional way,to much work for me,I am using a kit from Van Dykes.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zncsr66d_vM

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