What to do when your walls are full of trophies?

Discussion in 'Taxidermy' started by 375HH, Oct 17, 2012.

  1. 375HH

    375HH New Member

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    Greetings,

    New as a contributor to the the AfricaHunting forum but not new as a visitor.

    So I have the problem that many people may say they want, but is it problem. After all these years of longing for "walls full of trophies," I now have them.

    Now what?

    When your walls are full of trophies, how to you address this? Do you change your hunting style, for example only going for local "meat" hunting? Dispose of beloved, old but now so fabulous early trophies? DOnate them or hang less fabulous ones in a local Cabela's or other retailer?

    While I could squeeeeze in a just few more, after that it would start to look tacky and overdone, and I'm not looking for that, nor do I want to buy a new house or build on a trophy room addition.


    Thoughts?
  2. 35bore

    35bore AH Elite

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    Welcome to the forum, not to be a wise ass here, but, you build another wall. Build a trophy room or two, whatever it takes. Do not dispose of trophies, if they were worth mounting then they mean something to you. Add on, or add on.
  3. TOM

    TOM AH Elite

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    Do more fun hunts and take a videographer along. Pictures and video have taken the place of dip and pack for me.
  4. bluey

    bluey GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    welcome to the forum 375HH
    youve got a problem that i one day hope to have , a room chockablock full of fantastic memories this same room full of more than worhty opponents
    and the only thing better than one room like this is at least one more just like it .
    i would love to see some pictures of your trophies
    enjoy the site
  5. 375HH

    375HH New Member

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    I don't want to make it sound like I have an 8000 sq ft house or anything! I do have a couple of walls that are about 20 feet high and those are pretty full - to my tastes. I've seen some trophy room photos in the Trophy Room book series - some look nice and some, well, I'm not looking for that look! Perhaps I should ask Craig Boddington at the next SCI convention what he does. I have one small wall that could take some skulls, but I can see the slippery slope from here!

    I think the video and photo idea above is interesting and there's some cost savings without the pack/dip/crate/taxidermy bill (sorry taxidermists!).
  6. Nyati

    Nyati AH Legend

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    Welcome to the forum, 375HH.

    I m getting close to having the problem as I live in a flat, 140m2, but no way to expand.

    First thing is to have only european mounts, they take less space, and the rooms look less "cluttered".

    Next suggestion is to have all the small trophies (duiker, steenbok, etc) off the walls and mount them on small pedestals so thay can be placed in a bookshelf.
  7. Upton O. Good

    Upton O. Good AH Veteran

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    It doesn't sound like you are getting excitement about adding another trophy to the wall. You didn't provide much information so I'm wondering if you've burnt out on big game hunting or maybe just the shooting. Why not figure out what you want for your next adventure? Sounds like you've had many exciting times and you aren't sure where to go for new memories. But, I could be wrong, apologies if I am.
  8. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Start with Pedestals to be places around your house...

    A group of mounts in a small area when bunched together...
  9. The Artistry of Wildlife

    The Artistry of Wildlife SPONSOR AH Veteran

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    Just condense things, current ones and future mounts like this.....

    Great space savers in a room.

    Multi-Pedestal

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  10. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Dennis ... great mounts...good example of a pedestal mount to be placed around the house ... just add wheels for easy movement...
  11. 375HH

    375HH New Member

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    <<It doesn't sound like you are getting excitement about adding another trophy to the wall. You didn't provide much information so I'm wondering if you've burnt out on big game hunting or maybe just the shooting. Why not figure out what you want for your next adventure? Sounds like you've had many exciting times and you aren't sure where to go for new memories. But, I could be wrong, apologies if I am.>>

    Thank you, Upton, there's some real wisdom in your comments and implied questions!

    I guess I'm feeling a bit depressed about feeling like I can't hunt big game any more because I'll not have a place to put the trophies - so yes, mixed feelings.

    I may be working through a rule-set reset is all; I love hunting and don't want to lose it from my life.

    I did look into adding on to the house but where I live it would cost $100K and I'm balancing retirement investments with fun; while I'm in the top 2% I'm not in the top 1% - huge difference! I do pretty well investing, so due to the magic of compounding that $100K is really about $400K just over 10 years - so from a total cost of ownership perspective that makes it an expensive trophy room for me.

    So I guess I'm worried that I *can't* get excited about another hunt as I'd have to answer the question: "Where will put the trophies?" I don't know - so can I hunt?

    Does running out of space for trophies mean you can't hunt? I guess that's where I'm at, and I appreciate the vast wisdom of the good folks here.
  12. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    I'm in the same position as you, I'm looking to down size. I'm probably going to store the mounts and rotate. And I'm just going to take pictures for the most part. It's a fact of life, there is only so much room. And it gets too damn expensive to expand.

    I'd rather hunt for memories and experiences. Hope that helps.
  13. TOM

    TOM AH Elite

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    Pick up a new twist. Try bowhunting, handgun, muzzleloader, etc. I've found shooting an animal with a rifle totally different than a compound bow, which is totally different than my recurve bow. Each step adds a whole new level of difficulty and excitement.

  14. Stretch

    Stretch AH Fanatic

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    My advice. Introduce a young person to hunting. You can still go afield to participate in the hunt. No need to add trophy's on your wall, have the child's animal mounted for him/her. There is nothing more rewarding. You will be surprised at the level of satisfaction and excitement you will feel even though you never pull the trigger yourself.
  15. Biddleman

    Biddleman AH Senior Member

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    That's one hell of a problem to have. :) Like having a big breasted nympho model for a wife whose daddy owns a brewery. But seriously just because you can't put them on the wall doesn't mean you can't enjoy the hunt or hunt period. Rotate your stock, take pictures/videos. Someday I hope to have the same issue.
  16. 375HH

    375HH New Member

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  17. Hank2211

    Hank2211 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Veteran

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    Apart from the issue of wall space, what do guys who go to Africa multiple times do if - or when - they shoot the same trophy? Take someone like Craig Boddington, for example - who I think says he has shot more than a dozen cape buffalo - do with the trophies? Even if you add a wall, or a room, or a whole house, how many of the same animal do you want?

    I like to shoot springbuck, for example, on each visit to Africa - not usually easy shooting, good to eat, and not generally expensive - but feel I can't justify it because I simply don't want another hide or shoulder mount, even if I did have the sapce.

    Not to hijack the thread, but what do others do when they get multiples of the same trophy?
  18. Red Leg

    Red Leg GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    I have faced the same problem for years. I hunt for the enjoyment of the hunt - not the head. A recent trip to Africa is a good example. I took cape buffalo, eland, kudu, waterbuck, wildebeast, hartebeest, and impala. First I took the best photos that I could of all of the game taken. I make sure I have an 8x10 hero shot of each animal. I also build a photobook using one of the on-line outfits like Shutterfly for each safari or hunt. The wildebeest was made into a rug - I didn't care about the horns because I have shot better. The buff was kept as a bleached skull - a neat and smaller Euro option - and it looks great in front of a fireplace. The eland, hartebeest, and waterbuck were made into Euro mounts on plaques. They each hang next to hero shots and gold medal certificates - all of which take less space than a single shoulder mount. The impala, whose horns were nothing special, was supper. Be selective about actual mounts, exploit the euro-mount option, and be good with lots of photos.

    Ethics demand that we hunt so as to ensure that the animal is not wasted or that its death vitalizes the larger herd. Hanging a shoulder mount on the wall is not necessary to meet that ethical standard. Hunt; take photos; enrich your memories, and save the actual trophies of the truly exceptional examples.
  19. Upton O. Good

    Upton O. Good AH Veteran

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    Glad my comments were helpful. You know, at some point in our hunting lives I think we reach a point where we've shot enough game. The problem is, I think, we haven't lost the love of hunting and the need for adventure. The idea of teaching youngsters to hunt is a good one, that is what Ruark wrote about in The Old Man and the Boy.

    I've been thinking about your post and this picture came into my head of a great room filled with wonderful trophies of just about every animal, a real Noah's Ark. I imagined what it would be like to sit in that room and look at all of the mounts and have the memories of each animal would come back to me. That got me thinking about you mentioning, off handedly, about aging. I then thought that it was likely you have grown children and probably grandchildren.

    My next thought was if I were one of those grandchildren, I would probably be amazed with the animals and want to know the story behind them, the more dangerous or impressive animals first. So my next thought was have you written your memoir? If you are over 55 years of age you are now a historian for the family, kind of like an elder. You can tell the stories your grown children don't know, they weren't there. The grandchildren need to hear about your life or have it written down because sometime in the future they or their offspring will want to read it. In addition, if you do write about each animal in detail, you will relive it in a new and different way. That is also what Ruark did.

    Anyway, these are just my ramblings, they may be way off target.
  20. Hank2211

    Hank2211 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Veteran

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    Actually Upton, you are right on target (no pun intended). You said it better than I did - "at some point in our hunting lives we reach the point where we've shot enough game. The problem is . . we haven't lost the love of hunting and the need for adventure."

    I love the time in the field with a bunch of guys, no phones, no annoyances of modern life, and in fact the romance - that's what it is for me - of crawling on my belly in the African bush. And maybe unlike some, I haven't yet reached the point where that's enough. I still want to feel the adrenalin of having that animal in my sights, and I still want to pull that trigger, and feel the satisfaction of bringing him down cleanly, and then putting a backstrap on the table. I guess I just need to get over the guilt I feel if I don't need or frankly want to take a part of that animal home with me (other than in pictures).

    But you've given me the push I needed to start what I've meant to do for a long time - getting those stories down while I can still remember them. Thanks.

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