Shoulder vs Euro Mount

D-Orcutt

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Somehow I still haven’t shaken the taxidermy bug yet and my house is starting to look like a bass pro Museum. With 3 international hunts coming up within the next year one being in the eastern cape, What are some animals that should be done as a shoulder mount and those that still look good as a euro mount, my plan is to build at trophy room in the near future but being in my early 30s I’m sure I will stockpile a large collection at the rate I have been going.
 
What are you planning on hunting? Would be easier to give suggestions if you have an idea of what you are pursuing.
 
Impala and blesbuck display better as euro, for sure. I think wildebeest also work better as only skulls. And I might be alone in preferring buffalo as skull mount. Simply too big for my small house and I don't think the shoulder mounts are particularly attractive anyway. Kudu and gemsbuck work very well as euro because they take up less space with large horns mounted flat against the wall. But they are spectacular shoulder mounts. Zebra shoulder mount does not turn my crank at all for some reason. Full skin rug is best. Same with a nicely striped blue wildebeest. Better as full skin. Nyala and bushbuck can make nice shoulder mounts, depending on the specimen. Coloration varies considerably. Neither will take up a huge amount of space. Sable are beautiful shoulder mounts but do use up a lot of space. Hartbeest definitely make nicer skull mounts. As shoulder mounts they are downright ugly I think. Forget about shoulder mount warthog. Those almost always turn out looking very fakey. Skull on the shelf is best. Common springbuck make pretty little shoulder mounts. The white and black varieties are boring. Waterbuck and red lechwe can go either way. Euro mount for both requires some tilting, especially waterbuck. Similarly, euro mount Cape buffalo should be tipped nose up at about thirty degrees. Mounted flat to the wall it looks like something that should be wearing a yoke.
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Euroepan traditon appreciates more scull mounts. One of the reasons behind this is that trophy as a scull mount keeps its CIC score which is european score system, while on taxidermy work it cannot be scored or judged again.

But regardless of that (because I dont care for CIC or any other score, for me it is the age of animal that matters most, and good experience), my choice between the two was following.

Animals for which I consider to have most attractive colors, I made in shoulder mount.
Others I made in european scull mount. This sounds simple, but making actual decision was very hard, as all African animals are just beautiful

The ratio of the two, is roughly 50%-50%. Speaking of African trophies after 3 safaris done.
 
What are you planning on hunting? Would be easier to give suggestions if you have an idea of what you are pursuing.
I’ll be hunting 10 days and eland and blue duiker ( full body mount) as well as black wildebeest ,springbuck, Vaal reedbuck, bushbuck and then I have a few more opportunity animals on my list
 
Euroepan traditon appreciates more scull mounts. One of the reasons behind this is that trophy as a scull mount keeps its CIC score which is european score system, while on taxidermy work it cannot be scored or judged again.

But regardless of that (because I dont care for CIC or any other score, for me it is the age of animal that matters most, and good experience), my choice between the two was following.

Animals for which I consider to have most attractive colors, I made in shoulder mount.
Others I made in european scull mount. This sounds simple, but making actual decision was very hard, as all African animals are just beautiful

The ratio of the two, is roughly 50%-50%. Speaking of African trophies after 3 safaris done.
This will be my second trip and the first trip I did All shoulder mounts other than my second blue wildebeest I did a rug and euro, takes up a lot of space but I do like looking at them all
 
I’ll be hunting 10 days and eland and blue duiker ( full body mount) as well as black wildebeest ,springbuck, Vaal reedbuck, bushbuck and then I have a few more opportunity animals on my list
I would choose kudu over eland. An eland shoulder mount is huge! And they are almost hairless which can be a challenge for taxidermist if cape is even slightly damaged. Not particularly pretty either. Go with a euro for them. Hands down. Black wildebeest make an "interesting" shoulder mount for sure. They are difficult to prepare for euro due to shape of horns. Consequently, African taxidermists frequently overcook the horns.

Edit: I see from your avatar you already have a kudu. I have three kudu skulls on the walls of my little <800 sq ft home.
 
I would choose kudu over eland. An eland shoulder mount is huge! And they are almost hairless which can be a challenge for taxidermist if cape is even slightly damaged. Not particularly pretty either. Go with a euro for them. Hands down. Black wildebeest make an "interesting" shoulder mount for sure. They are difficult to prepare for euro due to shape of horns. Consequently, African taxidermists frequently overcook the horns.
I have a really nice pedestal Kudu mount in my dining room takes up a large wall , the eland was one that i agree will need to be a Euro, I was torn on the black wildebeest, I have both a euro and a shoulder mount of the blue I really like both of them like they say poor man’s buffalo
 
Either way you can't go wrong. The neck on the deer is huge and I know if you want that look my taxidermist I use has different mounts with puffed up necks. I have a euro mount and they are cool but shoulders look better.
 
Eland is a boring euro. It shows neither the size nor the regal nature of the animal. A well mounted bull will stop onlookers in their tracks to admire.
Same with a kudu. Mount one or two and then euros thereafter.
Black wildebeest and red hartebeest look great as euros but you lose the colors and character of the real animal.
Small animals like duikers and steenboks are cool skulls and their size makes them an interesting piece. They are also a fun mount-be creative and mount the first one, skulls after that.
A Vaal rhebok should at minimum be a shoulder mount done with some rocks and grass for habitat-it is far too unique for a euro!
If you are filling a castle with common game then euros are great preservation. But for unique trophies which you will have limited opportunities to obtain, do a shoulder and touch them every day and tell the stories while people marvel that your mounted Cape buffalo isn’t just another “cow skull”
No one ever looked at a buffalo skull and said-“he is looking at Me like I owe him money” good taxidermy will evoke such comments.
That said I have thousands of photographs in books and on walls that try to capture what I want to remember and share with people, it’s not the same but it is affordable and takes up almost no space, and no one is going to insist your picture books be hung in the garage!
 
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Somehow I still haven’t shaken the taxidermy bug yet and my house is starting to look like a bass pro Museum. With 3 international hunts coming up within the next year one being in the eastern cape, What are some animals that should be done as a shoulder mount and those that still look good as a euro mount, my plan is to build at trophy room in the near future but being in my early 30s I’m sure I will stockpile a large collection at the rate I have been going.

I know this problem very well because I hunt worldwide for over 40 years. Luckily I only have so-called Euro mounts because I never wanted that the mummies of my victims look at me all the time. Nevertheless, I have no place on the walls for a long time and there are among other things buffalo trophies as well as elephant tusks lying around in many corners. It's a problem when you know that you might not live that long and you don't know what will happen to the trophies. As a young hunter, I never thought of such things. At the moment I am trying to reduce the number of my rifles a little, but also the trophy supply. It's not easy, but at times I can give as present a deer antler and sometime a buffalo trophy, the latter are amazingly very desirable by people who have nothing to do with hunting.

You will inevitably run into the same problems, but don't ask yourself such questions now. Enjoy hunting worldwide, the memories of it and the nice trophies on the wall,... as long as there is still room for them.
 
Eland is a boring euro. It shows neither the size nor the regal nature of the animal. A well mounted bull will stop onlookers in their tracks to admire.
Same with a kudu. Mount one or two and then euros thereafter.
Black wildebeest and red hartebeest look great as euros but you lose the colors and character of the real animal.
Small animals like duikers and steenboks are cool skulls and their size makes them an interesting piece. They are also a fun mount-be creative and mount the first one, skulls after that.
A Vaal rhebok should at minimum be a shoulder mount done with some rocks and grass for habitat-it is far too unique for a euro!
If you are filling a castle with common game then euros are great preservation. But for unique trophies which you will have limited opportunities to obtain, do a shoulder and touch them every day and tell the stories while people marvel that your mounted Cape buffalo isn’t just another “cow skull”
No one ever looked at a buffalo skull and said-“he is looking at Me like I owe him money” good taxidermy will evoke such comments.
That said I have thousands of photographs in books and on walls that try to capture what I want to remember and share with people, it’s not the same but it is affordable and takes up almost no space, and no one is going to insist your picture books be hung in the garage!
At least the black wildebeest has some hair on it. Again, like eland, hartbeest are almost hairless. Can be tricky doing a shoulder mount if the cape is not perfect. And the causes for imperfect capes are almost endless. Anyway, they are not at all attractive. Big long funny shaped head and pretty much uni-colored cape. Black wildebeest look like the devil's pet. If OP is looking for something to make an impression on guests, that is the critter to shoulder mount. Mane runs right down the middle of his face, long bizarre curled blonde eyebrow and chin whisker hairs, and those menacing horns curled out in front. Have the taxidermist mount one wide eyed with bloodshot eyeballs and OP will have something that'll make dinner guests fill their pants. And it won't require a whole room to display.
 
I know this problem very well because I hunt worldwide for over 40 years. Luckily I only have so-called Euro mounts because I never wanted that the mummies of my victims look at me all the time. Nevertheless, I have no place on the walls for a long time and there are among other things buffalo trophies as well as elephant tusks lying around in many corners. It's a problem when you know that you might not live that long and you don't know what will happen to the trophies. As a young hunter, I never thought of such things. At the moment I am trying to reduce the number of my rifles a little, but also the trophy supply. It's not easy, but at times I can give as present a deer antler and sometime a buffalo trophy, the latter are amazingly very desirable by people who have nothing to do with hunting.

You will inevitably run into the same problems, but don't ask yourself such questions now. Enjoy hunting worldwide, the memories of it and the nice trophies on the wall,... as long as there is still room for them.
That’s a good point I’m going to let future me worry about what to do with them when I pass away, I do get lots of enjoyment looking at my taxidermy work, living in Arkansas not many people have Africa animals in there house
 
I have never regret a euro mount, I think they are equally cool, I probably end up doing 50/50 across the board. If it is something really wild I usually go shoulder or full body. I think the tiny 10 all look cool as full body mounts. My klipsringer is a show stopper in my trophy room. Most common antelope can be displayed either way. I’m also a big fan of rugs, cause I consider them a classical way to display trophies.
 
Euro all day long... they look better and its easier to move around if she decides to take it with her. Also since my wife mentions this.... euros are better for decorating with and around in the house.
 
Euro all day long... they look better and its easier to move around if she decides to take it with her. Also since my wife mentions this.... euros are better for decorating with and around in the house.

This will be one of the reasons why some trophies are desired by non-hunters, especially the various buffalo species.
 
This is a hard question which I am facing also, since I have no space left for mounts. I think euro mounts are great but when going all the way to Africa, for example, the animals are so unique that it feels wrong to not shoulder mount them.

I think it really depends on the species some are better shoulder mounted and some are better euro, for example Cape Eland and Cape Buffalo are excellent as euros while a gemsbok really should be a shoulder as they are so unique.

Anyway I will stop rambling. A large trophy room and winning the lottery would solve this problem
 

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