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Reference Study: Aoudads

Reference Study: Aoudads

by Larry Blomquist

Barbary sheep are a species of Caprid and within the subfamily Caprinae. This subfamily includes sheep, goats, and ibexes. It is native to the rocky mountains of North Africa. Barbary sheep are now rare in their native North Africa, but with their introduction to North America (mainly in the southwest USA) and southern Europe, the population is very stable with hunting seasons in many areas that they inhabit.


Barbary sheep are also called by other names in areas where they were introduced, such as aoudad, a name used by the Berbers which are North African people. This name is also commonly used for Barbary sheep in Texas and the southwest areas of the United States. In Libya, this sheep is called waddan, arui, and in Spain it is called arruis.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018/Author: Administrator Account/Number of views (8821)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: 5.0
Pedestal Backs with an Artistic Flare

Pedestal Backs with an Artistic Flare

by Kurt Ainsworth

In 1989 when I was a fledgling taxidermist, I entered a whitetail deer pedestal with artwork on the back. I was told by the deer judge that I should not have put artwork on the back. He thought it was distracting to the viewer—the back should be left plain. Nearly thirty years later it is now hard to find the back of a pedestal mount that is not exhibiting some sort of artwork.

    Since that time I have tried to come up with new ways and ideas for doing the back of each deer pedestal I enter in competition. Of course, when customers see them in my showroom and have to have it or something similar, an extra fee for my work and design puts more profit in my taxidermy.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018/Author: Administrator Account/Number of views (8584)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: 4.6
Moose Skull Boiler

Moose Skull Boiler

by Tony Grabowski

Moose skulls are difficult to boil and clean primarily due to the angle in which the antler bases diverge from the skull. Containers used to boil a moose skull can be quite large in order to immerse the entire skull and in doing so, at least portion of one antler. This large container can hold up to 45 gallons of water and is difficult to heat the water to the boiling point. The grease in the water can discolor the antler surface at the waterline.

   Several years ago, I came up with the idea to design and build a special moose skull boiler that could also be used for elk and caribou. During the design phase of this project, a prototype was made using ¾-inch plywood for the base and cardboard for the sides. Several large Alaska-Yukon moose skulls were fitted into the cardboard/plywood prototype and alterations were made where necessary.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018/Author: Administrator Account/Number of views (9451)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: 4.0
Breakthrough Award Winners

Breakthrough Award Winners


Winners of the Breakthrough Awards for 2018

THE HIGHEST AWARD AN ENTRY CAN receive is Judges’ Choice Best of Show. Breakthrough is honoring this top achievement with the Breakthrough Award for Judges’ Choice Best of Show. Each winner receives a handsome plaque and a gift certificate from Breakthrough worth $50.00 in subscription renewals and merchandise. This is our way of thanking and perhaps giving additional motivation for the many artists of our profession. Here are the winners from 2017:

Canada       Ben Khorshidnam

New Zealand       Ben Carillo

United Kingdom       Jack Fishwick

United States       Josh Hunt


Alabama       Lee Duet

Arkansas       Lee Duet

California       Tom Weatherson

Georgia       Tommy Rogers

Illinois       Mike Nakielski

Iowa       Matt Tainter

Tuesday, April 17, 2018/Author: Administrator Account/Number of views (8391)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: No rating
Articulated Skeleton Basics

Articulated Skeleton Basics

by Jim Hess

First, I am far from an expert on preparing articulated skeletons, but I do have some experience from past projects I’ve done, and I wanted to prepare a mink skeleton for an entry into the Professional Division at the 2017 World Taxidermy Championships in Peoria, Illinois. I have entered this category at previous shows and find it interesting, educational, and challenging. Like the walls of your home, a skeleton is the main structure that forms and supports the anatomy of an animal and when you learn by starting at that point, you are ahead of the game in understanding anatomy.

Larry Blomquist had asked me to consider doing an article on the basic process hoping to get others interested in the skeleton category at the World Show competition. I love competing and being a small part of that great show has rewarded me in many ways. Through my contribution of showing how I prepared my articulated skeleton, I’m hopeful this Professional Division category will have many more entries in 2019.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018/Author: Administrator Account/Number of views (9530)/Comments (0)/ Article rating: No rating

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