Once I Leave Africa...

Jakerthesnaker79

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All,

Been lurking and reading a while but have a couple of questions. Once I have finished my hunt (either Namibia or SA) what is the process? So for instance I am looking at plains game with mainly some European mounts. If I have them done in Africa, I pay them to ship then once they hit the US have to pay again for them to be shipped to the house?

or is it better to have them dipped an packed and have these done in the US?

likely asking a novice question but thanks for the guidance.

best ,
Jake
 

375Fox

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Confirm this with outfitter you decide to hunt with, but the process should be this. Outfitter will have a taxidermy they like to work with, outfitter will deliver your trophies to them to prepare for shipping (dip and pack or taxidermy mounts). Taxidermy will have a shipper they like to work with, they will deliver trophies to them. You need to decide on a customs broker in the USA, shipper will work with them and make sure all paperwork correct and get your trophies sent. Once your trophies clear, the customs broker will get it shipped to your taxidermist or your house (if allowed). Certain items like warthog skin, feathers, etc will make it required to be shipped to a usda approved taxidermy or tannery.
Any taxidermy mounts you want done, I would have the work dipped and packed and sent here. The quality of work I think is better overall and saves on shipping costs.
If you want euro mounts, get a price list to see what cheaper having them done there or dipped and pack and sent here. But I think it’s probably best they are euro mounted there. I’ve had a lot of skulls particularly impala skulls and smaller animals with thinner skull bones come back in rough shape after dip and pack process. If you euro mount it there they will take care of them.
 

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One way or the other you will pay the shipping to get them to your final destination.

Whether you get the trophies completed in South Africa or the US is a personal choice.
 
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Ridge Runner

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1. Are you having all your mounts done European, or are most mounts European and some shoulder mounts?

A. If all mounts are European then have the taxidermy done in country. It can reduce shipping cost from Africa to the US.

B. If the US receiving shipping company is close enough to you, do the math and decide if you can save money by picking your crate yourself.

2. If you are having any shoulder mounts done, you'll want to make sure the taxidermist in country does great taxidermy work since these mounts are going to displayed in your man cave for hopefully a very long time.

A. It cost less to have your mounts done in country vs here in the US. But if the quality of the mount is poor either in country or here in the US your money for mounts is wasted.

B. If you have a great taxidermist here in the US who can mount African animals then weigh the costs and determine which taxidermist you want to do the work. And add any additional shipping charges you may incur by having your taxidermy done here in the US.

As far as what you need to do to get your mounts shipped to you after you leave your outfitter.

You need to ask your outfitter or in country taxidermist:

When you can expect your mounts to shipped?

Who the in country shipper is and shipping company's contact info, and to where (what US shipping company) your trophies will arrive.

Hopefully this helps. As I'm sure more members will chime in on this subject.
 

Justbryan

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You could dip and pack (inexpensive and best if tanning) then make up your mind later when in the USA. This is what I did on the first trip and ended-up having all the back hides processed and all the animals shoulder mounted. This last time with 10 animals, I am spreading out the taxidermist cost. My taxidermist will mount two at a time over the next year.

My experience on the process on all three trips: Most of the time freight shippers will give you a quote to your door about 3-6 months after the hunt (euro mounts sometimes faster but sometimes slower). You may have to ask but my last shipment included freight from Houston to Dallas on Turkish Airlines (cheapest route at time of shipment). Then overland freight from Houston. 10 animals (including Cape Buffalo, Eland, Gemsbuck, etc.), back skin, hides, skulls, horns for $1600. Pretty cheap for Covid shipping. But I hear of people paying over $5000 for less animals.

Be patient, don't worry (it was hard for me), after the hunt the items will go to the taxidermist (sometimes takes several weeks for outfitter to deliver), then you will be contacted for payment and processing by the taxidermist (usually 3-6 months to complete), when finished the taxidermist will ship to the freight company (usually billed by taxidermist with animals), then the animals await shipping to USA(Covid has increased this time from days to months), air freight is arranged and freight bill is paid to your port (you could pickup at designated entry port) or home, then after flight the freight is shipped overland to the destination.

This could be quick (3 months) but may take 6 months or more. Mine just took 14 months due to Covid. Taxidermist will shut down for almost a month for "holiday" and this will be in December.
 

chashardy

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On my most recent two hunts, 2018 and 2019, I opted for dip and pack only in SA and my outfitter in Limpopo arranged all of that. The taxidermy company in Conroe, Texas handled all of the details on shipping and clearance of the crates into Houston. I did mostly Euro skulls, but two or three shoulder mounts. Ten animals in 2018 and seven in 2019. My hunts were in August each year, the animals were collected from the outfitter for dip and pack within about 60 days and arrived in Houston in late Feb. or early March and were delivered to me by Conroe Taxidermy in June of the next year--about 10 months total. Dip and pack and shipping was about $3000 total each year. I got regular emails from each of the vendors as the process went along and I paid invoices via wire transfers or credit card. All went smoothly.
 

Animal Artistry

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Hi Jake,

If you are looking to talk with someone about your questions, feel free to contact Stewart at 775-323-0203 or stewart@animalartistry.com.

Thanks,

Jason
 

TROPHY SHIPPERS

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Hi Jake!

Id be happy to have a quick call and discuss the process. It can be a complicated process but we will handle everything for you. I will send you a DM.

Best Regards
Tom
 

JimP

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I had a couple of euro's done in South Africa and if I had a choice I never would again. It looks like they took a screwdriver and broke out every bone up the nose of the skulls on both of them. My friend who was over with me experienced the same thing. The sad thing is that with the requirements of no meat left on the skull you really have no choice but to have them do it for you.

I have done quite a few euro's here in the US and I can do a lot better job than what I have seen come out of the taxidermy shops over there. Their biggest problem is over boiling the skulls and as I mentioned they usually take something to rout out all of the tissues up the nasal cavities.

If I was to do it again I would talk to the shop that is planning on doing it and find out just what their process is.
 

Jakerthesnaker79

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All, thanks - this really helped me understand the process and the next steps that have to occur.

I was likely going to have them all completed euro mount - I get a little more flexibility with those from the 'other half'. I mean I guess if I get over there and one of them just begs for it to be changed then I need to go ahead and have the information of my stateside guy handy (need to find a new one).

I am going to reach out to some that commented via DM and call to help me better understand the process and what items I need to understand, ask in advance, and take into consideration upon the trip.

I guess in my initial review I always read about the horror stories, taking so long, being held hostage for more $, etc. - I am sure there are some wonderful experiences along the way too, so wanted to have an understanding of what is 'industry standard SOP' vs. nah they are not doing what they are supposed to do.

Thanks for helping this new guy along - this is going to be exciting!

Best,
Jake
 

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When you research who you want to hunt with, I would recommend you ask outfitter and 10+ references about getting their trophies home. It’s easy to take you hunting, but not every outfitter knows how to get your trophies back to you. Most of these problems start with outfitter, but land on the taxidermy and shipper. I think most people only research the hunt itself when trying to decide, getting your trophies home is equally important. It’s not a consideration until it becomes a problem.
 

Jakerthesnaker79

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375Fox - thanks and that was kind of what my experience has been. I am going to have to focus my follow up questions around those pieces.
 

Mark Biggerstaff

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I have only been in two trips. I did sip and pack only from advice of guys here on AH. I am glad I did it that way. I have seen some euros done over there. I am not a fan of the black painted horns they do. I like them natural. Also if you are not happy when they arrive state side you have no recourse in getting them fixed.
 

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