*it's a bit cheaper and much simpler to have finished taxidermy (vs. raw hides/heads/horns-esp. certain species!) shipped, customs inspected and either picked up by you or shipped directly to your home. Agreed on choosing Taxidermist wisely (just like at home!) Here, I suspect he got somewhat of a deal for this gracious "advertisement," but he raises some really good points not discussed by most... African San Taxidermy Best Buy — Ron Spomer Outdoors
@Brian When you say including shipping, who was it that they used, how are their prices, and how long ago was it? If I recall one of the owners (or THE owner) from Bullseye had/has a brother with a shipping company.
I'm in Alaska. Heck, I'm in the same city and I don't trust but one taxidermist locally. I've had no issue using Namibian and South African taxidemists. Like the local ones, you have to do your research. The difference in price is amazing there compared to local Alaska, especially if you do anything but basic shoulder mounts. I have not used eithe you mentioned. In the East Cape I used Relive, they worked great. My recent hunt in Limpopo I am using Marakalalo. He's actually more central, but he is picking my stuff up. Great communication and reviews.
@cls When you say "here" you are in the same boat I'm in.... We're Canadian! If I could get someone here (that was reputable) to do mounts for $500-$750 like @jpomazi says he gets, I'd have it done here. As it is I can't afford to get it done here! Why is Taxidermy so much more in Canada??
No kidding. I went on my first safari in 2014 and my second in 2018 and so far have just had my warthog done. I decided the other day that I’d get my taxidermist to start my kudu. When I asked how much he said $1950!!! I nearly fell over I tell you. He said to let him know what turn I want the mount to be and then he’d order the form. Well that nearly two grand is needed for more important things than taxidermy I’m afraid so I don’t think it’s gonna get done any time soon. I feel like looking for more affordable taxidermists but would feel guilty going to get my cape from him. But it might come to that yet.
Gentleman , may I give my opinion here based on almost 30 years in the Safari business.
1. There are excellent taxidermists both in South Africa and in the US.
2. There are truly horrible taxidermists in both countries.
3. If you decide to raw prep or dip and ship , remember , you still need a reputable company to do that for you. it will more than likely be a taxidermist.
4. Prices will vary hugely. ( for mounts and dip and ship ) Consistency is the difference.
5. If your taxidermist in the US bad mouths South African taxidermists and/ or dip and ship companies per se...find another one , he's either a bad mouther by nature or hasn't received enough work from Africa that he has worked with the good ones.....either way , you don't need that around your trophies.
6. My personal choice in South Africa is Life form taxidermy.
I’ve used African wildlife Artistry in Sommerset East in the East Cape for three different hunts. They did a baboon mount which was excellent the rest dip and pack. Caroline and Rudy are owners. I will be using them this September and they will be mounting if successful a full body Caracal and Genet and two shoulders Blue Duiker and Cape Grysbok. Check out website. They due top tier work never any problems with getting trophies home. For small stuff shipping is not increased so you save The $100 bucks per skull/cape on dip and pack and on the little stuff $490 or so for shoulder mounts so beats $650 my taxidermist charges plus the $100 for dip pack. I save $500 bucks on just the two shoulder mounts and who knows how much on full bodies? Big animal mounts you get killed on shipping! Even buffalo and Eland skulls eat up volume/weight. Last year I had two crates shipped as one consignment from three different hunts/outfitters . One crate had a buffalo and Eland skull only and the other crate had one kudu, eland, gemsbok,blesbok,waterbuck, Duiker, tssebee skull/flatskin and 2 sable. All skull/horns no capes.The box with buffalo was slightly bigger and little more weight cost slightly more to ship! Buffalo and Eland horns are big and heavy! You can ship up to 5 crates in one consignment if you ever hunt with multiple outfits. Pick a good shipper in Jo’berg like Safari Cargo Systems (Nicolene) and you can save money if hunting multiple areas in South Africa. Where you really get caught on cost is each different province and taxidermy shop has their own veterinary fees and once they Stamp/paperwork and close crate you cannot reopen crate to add other trophies to consolidate everything into one big box!!! I learned that after hunting in 3 different provinces last year. Only thing that saved me having 3 crates from the 3 different outfitters was the outfit in Umpulanga province- by Kruger -used a taxidermy shop in the Northwest province that was near Moredou taxidermy -in Vryberg-where the majority of the trophies were so he went over and picked them up. The other crate was in Limpopo province.Otherwise I would have got killed on Shipping and Vet paperwork!!!!!! My broker in California- Hunter International cleared as one shipment even though it was two crates and they normally charge per crate if different provinces/paperwork. Payed off using the same outfit for clearing all my previous shipments from Africa on this Debacle!!!!!!
yhc... If you have someone you are happy with here in AK, more power to you. If you're still looking, Dahlberg Taxidermy in Wasilla is a top notch choice. And Jesse's turn-around time and communications are nothing short of exceptional.
Nelson. Is this message a PM format. I want to send you my email, but don't know if this is the cirrect way to do it. I'm at <firstname.lastname@example.org> Send me an email with your phone and I will call you about a skull I have. I went to school in Boston and am from Bernardston in the west part of the state. Moved to Alaska in 1984 adn never looked back.
Hi Luke. Just saw your message. I am in Dillingham, and have been since 2002. I took an elementary teaching gig here, taught here five years, and then got a job with Togiak National Wildlife Refuge as their education and outreach specialist. Recently I just got a promotion and now I'm the Visitor Services Manager. Prior to DLG I spent 6 years teaching for Lake and Pen in Nondalton.