When starting out, you have questions, and the biggest question is what about tools, what do I need to get started? You will find in this list that you may have most of the tools in you’re home or garage already. If you do not have what I have listed here, you can find them in any taxidermy supply catalog. You will need to find the suppliers by yourself, because in taxidermy, you need to do all the footwork on your own.

There are tools that you need to purchase; you have to have items such as books and videos. Even if you have chosen to go through a taxidermy school, these are necessary, and there is a plethora available that you can purchase used from experienced taxidermist, or you can purchase new, and resell them after and when you know it all.

Great books to start out with are the line of Breakthrough Manuals for mammal, bird & waterfowl, fish, or big game.

Mounting videos and DVD’s will answer 99% of all the questions that you can think of. However, beware, not all mounting videos are the same, Mr. R mounts a deer different from Mr. Y or Mrs. D. For they all have different methods shown to you on the videos with the same outcome. Therefore, you will learn that there are many ways to skin a cat, or mount a deer, bird, or fish. This is not snap together model car building. You want to learn basic skills and then in the future try different methods that work for you.


You will need Safety glasses because you will be using chemicals such as pickle mixes, and tanning liquors depending on the processes, you choose. Be sure to buy a bottle of STOP ROT. This product will save you many headaches down the road, this site has allot of information on STOP ROT and its many known and yet unknown uses. This tried and true product really performs the way it is made to do. When used up front when thawing specimens, it will keep bacteria from spoiling the hide before you get to the end of the project. Because all beginners are slow at first, a bottle of this wonder drug is well worth the investment if you want the hair to stay on the animal before you finish.
Beginner’s Tools for Starting Taxidermy
                 By Paul Thompson
     Thompson's Whitetail Taxidermy
               Fort Gratiot, Michigan
You will need:
men’s hair comb, woman’s hair brush, tooth brush,
pet brush,
insect pins,
cape thread,
fishing line or dental floss for thread, hammer,
drill and drill bits, extension cord,
Philips head screw driver,
drywall screws,
rubber bands,
playing cards for carding ears,
cloths pins,
large paper clips, plastic bags,
wire ties,
plastic spoons, measuring cups,
a small baby scale or any letter scale with increments in ounces, window screen, potters clay,
critter clay,
modeling tools,
dental picks,
sand paper,
small rasp or sanding block,
lip tucking tool,
super glue,
paint brushes, disposable brushes, air brush and paints, ph paper,
dawn dish soap,
small sharp knives, utility knife or exacto knife,
skive knife, 
fleshing horn or beam, fleshing tools,
shop apron,
surgical gloves, hemostats,
hack saw,
tape measure,
wire brass brush,
ear openers,
dermal tool,
tongue depressors, pliers,
scalpel handle and blades,
staple gun,
mounting stand, tweezers,
manikin rougher,
small flash light, calipers,
borax laundry soap, paper cups for mixing, bondo,
cool whip bowels, masking tape,
small plastic buckets, 5 gallon buckets,
large plastic tubs with lids,
hot glue gun,
caulking gun,
fish skinning knife
and scraper,
hair dryer or a clean shop vac that you can use for blow drying, electric fan,
broom and dust pan, and all the supply catalogs you can find.  Moreover, this is just a start. You can purchase the more advanced tooling as you learn and grow.
Hide Tanning and taxidermy, www.hidetanning.net, is sponsored by                    WHITETAIL DESIGNER SYSTEMS, INC.
                                  WHITETAIL DESIGNER SYSTEMS, INC.
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