Field care is very important to get your mount to look its best.  I will include some pointers on how to best take care of your trophy.   If you have any doubts, call for advice.

Freezing any skin

Wether you are dealing with a deer cape, coyote, fox or any hide, follow this procedure.

First take care of it as soon as possible, the day you shoot it is best, especially when it is warm.  Once you have skinned the animal, lay the skin out to cool (outside if it is below freezing, or in a freezer if it is warm) make sure it is fur out, skin side together.  Once it is very cold, but not completely frozen fold it up and put it in a plastic bag.  It is very important to fold the skin together and not allow air to get to the skin or face.  Do not just leave it outside when it is cold, as the air will dry it out and cause problems.  If it is a full body, it can be left outside, but put a plastic bag around the head and wrap with duct tape.


For a shoulder mount, cut around the body, about 5 inches behind the shoulder.   Cut aound the knees of the deer, then along the back of the leg, you will see a white line.  Follow this line to the armpit, then cut straight back to the cut you made around the body.  Then just skin it to the base of the neck, try to get to the last vertabrae on the neck.  The less neck you leave, the shorter the incision I have to make and the less visible the sewing will be.

Full Body mount

Most full body mounts are cut down the back, from the base of the head, to the base of the tail.  Leave the legs in tact, just skin them to the first joint and cut off at the joint.  Also leave the tail, just cut it off at the base.  Only skin it if you have to, I prefer you bring in the animal not skun.

Tanning for wall hanging

The most important part to remember here is to make straight cuts.  Just remember, any cut you make is how it will come back to you.  Jagged cuts dont look as good as straight cuts.  Most furs are not cut much, but tubed.  If you skin your own, you can leave the legs on or cut them off, it is up to you.  For larger animals that are to be tanned, cut down the belly, the make a perpendicular cut down each leg.