So, the time has finally come—your taxidermy animal mount is ready for pickup, and now you have a visual to go with the story of your trophy hunt. But while you’re obviously excited and proud, you must remember that owning a trophy mount is more than simply hanging it on the wall for years and left untouched. In fact, you want to plan for regular cleanings to ensure they last for years to come. You wouldn’t want the time it took to hunt and the amount of money you spent to result in a ruined work of art.
Whether you already have a trophy room or are commissioning your first animal trophy, here are five cleaning tips to keep in mind for deer mounts in Cody, WY, as well as other large taxidermy pieces:
• Dust the hairs: Dust is one of taxidermy’s biggest enemies. It works its way into the fur of trophies and makes them look tired and old. Be sure to dust your mounts regularly to avoid excessive dust buildup. And if you are going to be out of town for a long period of time, cover each trophy with a clean sheet to keep dust from piling up.
• Clean inside the mouth: The mouth of any trophy speaks volumes about the animal and shouldn’t be neglected during cleaning. Prized deer mounts in Cody, WY look a lot less impressive if a spider and its family have moved into the mouth cavity, complete with their spider web house.
• Clean the eyes: One benefit of trophies having glass eyes is that you can use Windex to brighten them up when they start looking dull. A small amount of glass cleaner on a Q-tip will do the trick, but be careful not to use too much. Also, never spray the eyes or surrounding fur directly.
• Clean the antlers: For some species of antlered creatures, a vacuum is the easiest way to dust. On occasion, rough surfaces and points can make it difficult to use a typical duster. Also, be careful not to use an oil that will darken your trophy’s antlers. If you’re unsure of which substance to use, check with your taxidermist before applying anything to trophy antlers.
• Leave it to the pros: When in doubt, hire someone or seek advice from a professional. There is nothing more upsetting than realizing you have destroyed an expensive mount just because you were too stubborn to ask for help.
With all of this in mind, caring for your mounts also involves more than just a dusting here and there. The professionals advise against hanging or placing taxidermy animals close to sources of heat—like fireplace mantels, stoves and heating vents—and keep them out of direct sunlight. Know that all of these sources can irreversibly fade and weaken mounts.
Proper and regular spot cleaning is key to maintaining the appearance of your life-like mounts; it’s a good way to preserve the physical memory of your hunt forever. If you have any questions or concerns about cleaning your taxidermy deer mounts in Cody, WY, don’t hesitate to contact the knowledgeable team at Nature’s Design Taxidermy.