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Thread: Found Moose Rack

  1. #1
    Member SperBear's Avatar
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    Default Found Moose Rack

    My friend found a fresh moose antler (from this year, has the velvet on it) and wants to do something with it but isn't sure. He has had it for about 3 days now and says that it is really beginning to stink, or in his words "the stench is unbearable." He'd like to do something crafty or try his hand at self-taxidermy.
    Any suggestions on preserving the velvet? Controlling the odor? And any ideas on what to do with it?
    I know its WAY to early for for moose to drop antlers, maybe this one was from a bear kill or somethin, haven't seen it so I don't know much more.
    Thanks in advance

  2. #2

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    I'm betting it is too late to salvage anter, when theystart to stink the rotting process has already started. Strip the velvet off and make a carving out of it.

  3. #3
    Member sharksinthesalsa's Avatar
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    Default antler

    just one????...or a set like a skull or something....and yes the velvet is no good now if it smells....even a good set late in the season it is 50/50 with moose velvet....it just doesnt seem as hardy as caribou velvet...get the velvet off before the flys lay eggs and maggot start grown under the velvet.....life gets really fun then.......strip it off then use a power washer to get the rest of the tissue off...then soak it in some cold water to get teh rest of the blood out.....it will likely be very spongey and probably good nothing
    "early to bed, early to rise, fish like hell, and make up lies"

  4. #4
    Member CGSwimmer25's Avatar
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    Default

    Anyone know how long you have to inject Formaldehyde into velvet horns before they start going bad?

  5. #5
    Member sharksinthesalsa's Avatar
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    Default i wouldn't do it

    that is some nasty stuff and don't pke yourself or your gonna have problems....but i'd say less than a week
    "early to bed, early to rise, fish like hell, and make up lies"

  6. #6
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Default Moose antlers in velvet

    Okay, I'm trying to remember this stuff, so if I don't have it exactly right, somebody feel free to correct me (come on, you know you want to!)

    It's too late to treat this antler. Antlers in velvet are very porous at the ends, and engorged with blood. As the antlers finish developing, the blood vessels "dry up" (for lack of a better term), and the antlers harden. Than the velvet dries and is rubbed off.

    If you peel the velvet off this antler the ends will be very fragile and porous, and will likely break off during handling. Keeping the velvet is not an option at this point, because the antler has started to rot. To keep an antler like this, it has to be treated with a preservative immediately after the animal dies. Formaldehyde was commonly used a few years ago for this, and was administered by injecting each of the large vessels (with a hypodermic syringe and a needle) until it pushed out the blood and flowed out the other end of the veins (at the base of the antler). But formaldehyde is very dangerous (an accidental drop in the eye will cause blindness), and it is not advisable to use it. I have heard that some folks are using borax, administered topically after hand-stripping the blood out of the antler, however I would guess that this is marginally effective on antlers that are early in the development stage.

    Take a picture and toss it.

    Hope it helps!

    -Mike
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  7. #7
    Member akfirefighter's Avatar
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    Default perserving velvet

    I use denatured alcohol when preserving velvet. It is best to inject the alcohol when in the field. You want to use a large syringe and start at the points and keep injecting till the blood runs clear near the bases. If you are starting to smell the rot now it is to late and you should just tear off the velvet and hang them on a shed or practice carving them. Good luck.

  8. #8
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    Default

    soaking it in denatured alcohol will also work. as will methenol, but you need a good bit of it, and as stated before its too late. i know of people that also freeze them for up to a year, and say its never failed. they do have to coat it with a sealer so that the bugs don't get to it. maybe next time

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