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Thread: What to do with an ermine

  1. #1

    Default What to do with an ermine

    I wanted to get a full mount done, but nobody around here will do them anymore. One guy said he is a year behind but if he did it, it would be 500 bucks! Everybody online says it should cost about 200 or so. I am thinking of attempting it myself, but not sure. Anybody have any advice? I don't want to waste the little guy.

  2. #2
    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Make a full length fur coat for Ken, and donate it to the hogfamily.
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    If you want a mount, you might want to give the whole animal to the taxidermist as the feet are a PAIN-IN-THE-BUT* to skin. if you do try it, ( now I have never sen this done but its an idea) get some tanning solution( the stuff in the orange bottle) and splash a little on the fur and let it dry (be sure it has no meat on it, a task that is easy by whipping it down with a wash cloth)

    BUt here I am getting ahead of my self.

    If you want to mess around with it, try getting the full body form, but cut the head off at an angle like a bears head would be for a rug, and put it inside the skull, open skinned, with some black felt around it and hang it up where you can't see all your flaws, I think that would be pretty sweet, but take in mind I have only ever mounted one thing and that was a bear, so I don't know what you would do to an ermine. but stretch it like you would a beaver, only stretch it so the fur is all even and looks good instead of some fancy form.
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  4. #4

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    The best thing to do when mounting small animals like that is to freeze dry them. Trying to mount something that small on a form is hard and the end product wont look as good as a freeze dried one. I would find a taxidermist that has access to one. There are a few on the Kenai Peninsula that do it.

  5. #5

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    The Best ones I have seen have had their tails bobbed, stood up on their hind legs and a snarl on their lips with their ears laid back. Makes them look like a Miniature Polar Bear. I think this would be easy to do with the suggested Freeze Dried Method.

    Probably possible to DIY in a frost free freezer, because I do know how easy it is to mummify a full sized turkey in one!!!
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  6. #6
    Member PG13's Avatar
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    907 beat me to the punch. Freeze dried taxidermy is the way to go with smaller critters, especially the mustelids. I had an ermine done on a snowy branch on all fours and a least weasel upright on a little stone but both were destroyed by an outdoors cat accidentally locked into the taxidermist's shop while he was on a fishing vacation. That's the story I was told, but rumor has it they looked fantastic and I was refunded but the fella made a nifty profit selling them off. No idea but it's definitely on my to do list to get similar specimens to replace those lost.
    Go Big Red!

  7. #7

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    Okay, this is a new one. How does the freeze drying deal work?? And does anyone know of any valley-area taxidermists who do it?

  8. #8

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    Freeze drying is another way to preserve the animal without having to skin it. They run rods in the body and shape it how you want it and then stick it in the freeze dryer. There is more to it than that but thats the basics of it. Im not sure who does it up in the valley. I know of a couple places that do it down here on the peninsula but thats a bit of a drive for you.

  9. #9
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    What is the cost for freeze drying? I have been thinking about having a ermine mounted. What are the name or phone number of the places that do the freeze drying? Thanks in advance.

    450

  10. #10
    Member MARV1's Avatar
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    Skin it, tan it and you have a perfect pecker warmer... As cold as it has been this winter it is a plus!
    The emphasis is on accuracy, not power!

  11. #11
    Premium Member denalihunter's Avatar
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    I had my son's porcupine freeze dried 4 years ago by a taxidermist on the Peninsula... wish I could remember his name, but he was young guy who specialized in birds I think. Anyhow, he sent it down South to have it freeze dried, and it came back a year later perfect! It was mounted on a length of tree and hangs on the lodge wall. I was amazed at how well it came out. I understand from the taxidermist that the porcupine was the largest animal they had ever done, and they had to run it through the process twice to make it work. Only cost me $350 bucks! I should have thought of this a few days ago when I caught 2 ermine on the line. My wife is skinning them out now... heh heh!
    Experience Real Alaska! www.alpinecreeklodge.com

  12. #12

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    Dang! That is a sweet price for a porky! I'm going to look into some taxidermists back home and maybe ship to a friend and have it done and shipped back. If you think of your guy, let me know as I may want to use his guy down south. Thanks.

  13. #13

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    denalihunter, I think you are thinking of Rich Dykema. He owns Fowl Play Taxidermy. He used to send his stuff for freeze drying out of state but now he owns his own.

  14. #14
    Premium Member denalihunter's Avatar
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    Yep, Rich is the guy! I didn't realize he had a freeze dry set up now! I really want to get him some ermine's and possibly a bird or two, if he does those in there. Thanks 907 for jumping in here.

    Claude
    Experience Real Alaska! www.alpinecreeklodge.com

  15. #15
    Member akfirefighter's Avatar
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    Rich is here on the peninsula. He has a freezer and does great work. For any small game freeze drying is the way to go. Here is his web site.
    Www.bird-taxidermy.com

  16. #16

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    Thanks. I called him today and I'm gonna get it to him. Thanks to all of you for the help!

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