Has anyone used Highveld Taxidermy?

Discussion in 'Taxidermy' started by bluebill, May 30, 2012.

  1. bluebill

    bluebill New Member

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    Hello,

    I just joined AH, and just returned from my first trip to Africa. What a surreal experience! I was lucky enough to take 7 nice trophies in Namibia, and my outfitter strongly recommended that I use Highveld for my mounts. I looked into them before the trip, and their work appeared to be solid and of high quality. But naturally, after returning from the trip and bouncing things through my head at least 1000 times, I decided to ask you guys if you've had good or bad experiences with them. I have time to have the trophies shipped elsewhere, as we just returned and the horns/capes are being treated and dried, so we're still weeks from when they can be shipped. Any and all thoughts and/or opinions are welcomed.
     
  2. Fritz Rabe

    Fritz Rabe AH Veteran

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    I know Thomas from Highveld personally and he is the biggest taxidermist in Africa, His work is of the utmost quality. You will never be unhappy with it. His staff are professional and he knows how to mount animals. I can not see any problems. You can rest assured.
     
  3. spike.t

    spike.t GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    welcome to AH. i know someone who had their taxidermy done at highveld, and he was pleased with the results. i visited them a few years ago and it all looked very good.
     
  4. Diamondhitch

    Diamondhitch AH Legend

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    I have not used them but have heard high praise on the quality of their work. As a taxidermist myself, when looking at their web gallery the worst I see is good quality and the best is superb, on par with the best in the world. I have heard that their prices are high but it all comes back to that whole paying for what you get thing. I have also heard that they can be a bit slower than others though.
     
  5. RogerHeintzman

    RogerHeintzman AH Enthusiast

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    Welcome to AH Bluebill,

    Have you seen Radio Shack advertising? Radio Shack, you got questions we got answers. What follows are just my answers.

    I have been to Highveld and toured the studio as a hunter (not taxidermist) for they did my dip and pack from 2010 safari, (this is who outfitter uses). It took 15 months to just get my skins and horns. This time frame alone was the longest of the 3 safaris I have done. They are a very big company and this alone scared me, but it was to late to change. I now know better. Definately contact them and get a time quote, but then what recourse do you have when they surpass the time quote? None!

    Quality? As a trained eye, it is OK and you should be pleased.

    Another hunter in camp is having his mounts done with them and they are just starting them, say they are behind, go figure. He is returning this Sept. and thinks he will be home again before his 2010 mounts.

    My question is, why are you considering having the mounts done in Africa and not close to home?

    Below is what some clients and hunters has disclosed.
    1. Cost? Some shops are less and some more, just as in the US. If you are having all 7 shoulder mounted think of the size of crate(s) to be shipped back home. Are you really saving money? Some have paid more shipping or the same as their original safari. You have time to get quotes here and there plus the shipping.
    2. Quality? Again some are very good, good and not so good, US and abroad. Just because some one is a taxidermist, does not qualify them to do African and or NA animals. Really check them out!
    3. Recourse. Many a trophy have come back damaged and needing repairs. Who will be doing it? Local taxidermist and who will pay, you.
    4. You can get insurance, but find out who is the insurance company used from Africa, get a policy of what is and is not covered. May not happen? This is some thing I have even questioned and need more answers for my future hunts.

    Search the archives here for stories of the above and make you informed decision from there.

    I don't now if I cleared anything up or muddied them. All the best to you.



    "A Dream can be relived again and again in Africa"
     
  6. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Welcome to AH

    The questions you are asking should have been asked prior to to your safari. While the taxidermist you are asking is one of Africa best, was that your original plan?

    Roger has some very valid points. Look them over.

    Bringing your raw vs finished products back needed to be considered.

    We have just went through a few members who have had issues with receiving there completed animals and the damage that occurring while in transit.
     
  7. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Lots of good questions.

    That time lines expressed on their own would have me considering other options.
     
  8. mstewart44

    mstewart44 AH Senior Member

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    My advice (from experience) is to get your stuff done back home. I had Highveld do the 10 animals from my trip in 2008. Did not see my trophies for two years!!! Mixed results! Some good, some just plain awful. Thomas eventually redid the work with new animals I did not shoot but those showed up in early April this year. It took so long to get the whole thing straightened out I am pretty much over it. I will try and PM you tomorrow and discuss in more detail and can send you pictures. I went back in mid April but am using local guy this time. Lesson learned.
     
  9. bluebill

    bluebill New Member

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    mstewart - I just sent you a message with my phone number, please let me know when you can chat.
     

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