Wild Boar Taxidermy: Preserving the Trophy By: Cody Weiser
I recently sat down with Charlie Stein, owner of Ashtin's Wildlife Studio and Taxidermy Service in Shiner, Texas. Charlie is a master taxidermist with a perfectionist's eye for detail, especially when it comes to wild boar mounts. The purpose of my visit was to educate myself (and you) in the area of wild boar taxidermy and the many new options that are now available to the boar hunter. I was amazed to learn what Charlie can do with a trophy hog.
In the area of shoulder mounts, the taxidermy supply company "WASCO" leads the market in boar manikins. Multiple positions can be utilized to create anything from a closed mouth, calm, natural look to a raging "fight to the death" attack mode. These all can be portrayed in a shoulder, half body, or full body mount. My personal favorite is the boar dining on a fresh rattlesnake. This mount is definitely going to be my next!
Charlie can even immortalize a hog dog that looses his life in the pursuit of a trophy boar by having it bay or fight a hog forever in a corner room mount. (A little different, however some believe it is the ultimate show of respect to their favorite hunting companion.)
The options for wild boar pelts and rugs amazed me and I was awakened to a whole new trophy avenue of displaying your animal. Charlie can produce a felt bottom boar hide rug with or without an attached head mount. These look awesome displayed on either the floor or stretched on the wall. The pelt can also be skinned completely over the head to include the snout and made to hang. This makes a great conversation piece when hung on the office coat rack.
For those who want to display their boar on a budget, there are many new options with "European" style skull mounts. Skulls can be cleaned and mounted to hang on the wall or can be displayed on a flat surface atop of a piece of polished Texas mesquite or cedar. The skulls can be sent off and bronze, silver, or even gold plated. This can include the tusks, or the ivory can be left natural and re-inserted into the plated skull. Charlie can customize pedestal style mounts for center room displays or customize multiple animal scenes such as two boars fighting or a sow with a piglet.
I was informed that there are a few key factors to remember once you have harvested an animal. First, is to cape back your trophy far enough to get adequate hide to complete the mount you are wanting to have created. Excess can be removed, but if you cut it too short then you have no options left. Next, I was told that, "water is your enemy". Charlie said that after the boar is caped, you should immediately double bag the cape and head in heavy duty trash bags so water cannot seep in. Place the bagged trophy in an ice chest and cover it with ice. The main objectives are to keep the cape dry and cold.
I was truly impressed with what can be done to a trophy wild boar. The visit to Ashtin's Wildlife Studio and Taxidermy sparked my trophy interests and goals for the future. Give Charlie Stein a call at (361) 594-8200 and feel free to pick his brain about what he can do for you. He is super friendly and can pretty much cater to your imagination. I personally recommend his work and professionalism. His studio can also mount any other animal from reptiles and varmints to the largest of African game.
The quest for a trophy boar can take years to achieve. Once you have accomplished this goal, make the memories last a lifetime by preserving your trophy through the art of taxidermy.