Taxidermy starlings, latest work!

Taxidermy starlings

I’ve recently completed this gorgeous pair of common starlings.

Beautiful birds to work with! Although considered a bit drab and even common pests by many people, they actually have this stunning multi-colour iridescence to them.

No photo will be able to capture these stunning colours, but once you see for yourself when they shimmer in the sunlight, you’ll be amazed!

I also experimented with a new base technique, using weight to counterbalance I set up this shelf mount.

The unusual branch stems from the oak base and hangs downwards over the shelf, giving a dynamic appearance.

Find out more about the listing and purchase this unique piece of taxidermy below.

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Taxidermy Robin – Work In Progress

Taxidermy Robin – WIP

According to social media, this week is #TaxidermyWeek!

Heres my latest work in progress, a gorgeous Eurasian Robin (Erithacus rubecula).

For whatever reason, I find them very difficult little birds to work with, presenting me with quite a few issues due to their delicate nature.

Out of all of the robin’s I have worked on though, this is probably my best!

Really happy with how he has turned out.

I’ll do the finishing touches like painting and sculpting the mouth once he is completely dry.

Unfortunately this taxidermy mount is a commission and won’t be for sale.

However, if you have any queries or have a specific bird you are after, please get in touch.

– Krysten

Taxidermy – Behind the scenes

Taxidermy, what happens behind the scenes?

A brief overview


The latest commission I completed was that of a two dead mount birds. (Birds purposely modelled made to look ‘dead’) As well as beautiful objects to look at, these specimens were commissioned to be used as film props. The customer requested photos of me working on the birds, so I set up my camera in my workshop.

I thought some of the shots were pretty cool and give a brief snapshot as to what goes on behind the scenes in the art of taxidermy. My personal favourite bit is blow-drying them after the skins have been treated and washed. It always amazes me how a weedy, wet looking lump of skin and clumped feathers can somehow be dried and fluffed up to resemble the bird it once was, once again!

I had a big response on instagram with these images.

It’s not everyones cup of tea, but I thought you’d like to see them too.

(don’t look if you’re squeamish)

Taxidermy Yellowhammer Commission

Taxidermy Yellowhammer (Emberiza citrinella): I had the pleasure of working on this beautiful British bunting.

Unfortunately, the male Yellowhammer got lost in the post for a day, resulting in him fully defrosting and starting to turn.

This is usually game over for small birds, as they start to decompose fairly quick – I didn’t hold out much hope.

Despite soaking in alcohol for a while to toughen the skin and kill bacteria that makes the skin bad and feathers fall out, lots did.
Taxidermy Bird Skin
I persevered anyway and did the best I could.

His back was completely bald and he had some secondary feathers missing on one side, which was a great shame.

Painstakingly, I glued as many feathers back as I could, and despite his condition, I’m very happy with how he turned out.

They have a very distinctive call that most birders recognise as sounding like “A little bit of bread with no cheeeeeeeeese”

Bespoke Taxidermy Rabbit Project

Custom Taxidermy Rabbit Commission on Hand Painted Shield


This project was a first for me, I really enjoyed it.

This one is a special project for someone that wanted a unique gift to give to his regiment after leaving the British armed forces.

Originally, the client wanted a shirt with the regiment emblem pinned to the shield.

I suggested painting the emblem on to the shield to give a cleaner and neater looking finish, as this was something I was able to do.

Logistically, the rabbit would mostly obscure the emblem if it was placed centrally on to the shield, so I suggested a slightly different, more contemporary approach.

I came up with a rough concept sketch to help my client visualise the final piece a little better.Taxidermy Sketch rabbit commission

The emblem has been deconstructed slightly to cover the whole shield, so the important elements are still visible such as the crown and the lion.

The shield was primed and painted by hand with oils.

The rabbit was the result of an unfortunate roadkill, but was in overall great condition and will now be honoured for a very long time to come.

Thank you for looking! If you have a bespoke taxidermy commission idea, please feel free to get in touch.

Happy New Year! First taxidermy project of 2019 – White Pheasant

Taxidermy Male White Pheasant


This is my first completed taxidermy project of 2019 – a stunning white (or leucsistic), male pheasant.


This specimen definitely put me through my paces, due to the fact he was in moult. Feathers were flying out left right and centre and he had sustained some damage to his wing and leg bones, which I have to retain in the taxidermy process.

He also had a bare patch on his neck that was quite noticeable. I used some of the feathers he dropped to carefully repair this patch.

All ready to go to his new home now.

Happy 2019 everyone!

Guaranteed for Christmas Cut Off Dates!

Order now to avoid disappointment!


The last day for guaranteed delivery to the UK in time for Christmas is:

18th December

So please get your orders in as soon as possible to avoid disappointment!

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas!

– Krysten

‘Two For Joy’ Taxidermy Magpies

Two For Joy


Here’s my latest commissioned project, a pair of lovely magpies!

A lot of people are superstitious about magpies, seeing one being somewhat bad luck, originating from the rhyme ‘One For Sorrow’

For this reason, I prefer to create magpie pieces in pairs.

They’ve now flown off to their new home.

No photography ever captures magpies beautiful iridescent colours on their feathers.

 

Taxidermy Swan in Progress

Taxidermy Mute Swan


I actually skinned this swan a long while back after she unfortunately fell victim to a fox attack.

Due to a change in law relating to the Royal Swan Marker, I can no longer sell this specimen.

I can, however keep her for my own personal collection. It would be such a shame to waste such a beautiful specimen!

Due to the lack of space, as well as time and energy due to my on-going health issues at the moment, I opted for a half/head mount.

It’s still surprising just how much work is involved!

Waterfowl have extremely dense, waterproof feathers, as well has having extremely fatty deposits on the feather tracts and skin to make them buoyant on the water.

This makes the de-fleshing, washing and drying process twice as long and even longer when the feathers are white.

But it’s worth it, look how beautiful she is!

Once dry, I will do some re-construction work of the bill and do some paint work to make her shine.

Holiday Leave – DELAYED ORDER NOTICE

I’ll be away from 26 August – 10 September 2018.

All orders placed in this time will be resumed on the 10th September.


I’ll be heading away on holiday to Vermont soon, I’m very excited!

Especially excited to see some North American wildlife. It’s a part of the world I’ve always wanted to visit.

I’ll have limited access to wifi, so any queries sent in this time frame will be answered as soon as I’m back.

Best wishes,

Krysten

Taxidermy Red Squirrel

Red Squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) Taxidermy Commission

I’ve never worked with a Red Squirrel before, only our invasive Grey’s, so this project was a real treat!


Unfortunately this little Red Squirrel was found on the side of the road in Cumbria by the client as the result of a road traffic accident.

I’m surprised at just how much smaller and fluffier they are compared to Grey Squirrels!

This poor squirrel had a badly smashed up skull, which made taking measurements needed for eye placement and facial features impossible.

I took a death mask of her before I started work, which helped me to roughly estimate where certain things had to be placed.

In this process, I made an alginate cast and poured plaster of Paris in to it to get a 3D model of her head.

She was placed on a piece of wood provided by the client and she’s going to be placed pride of place in the corner.

 

Taxidermy Goldcrest – The smallest bird!

The Goldcrest (Regulus regulus)

One of the taxidermist’s greatest challenges.


Here are the results of the gorgeous little Goldcrest I recently completed.

Considering how small and fiddly it was, I am extremely pleased with how it came out!

The glass dome with the pine foliage really sets this piece off.

It’s now in it’s new home with the owner who found this poor bird laying in the middle of the road.

She is really pleased with how it turned out and she left me a lovely review!

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I am extremely pleased with my Goldcrest commission from Taxidermy co.

Krysten created a simple mount in a protective dome that fulfilled my brief perfectly, showcasing the tiny form of the Goldcrest in a fabulous way. She listened to my brief, ensured that the work stayed within budget and regularly updated me with her progress.

After completion, the item arrived in quick time and extremely well packaged. I would not hesitate to commission again

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I really do get to work with some lovely people.

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