Learn about Taxidermy

Taxidermy is the art of mounting or reproducing animals for display or study and in the past the word has been associated with large gloomy Victorian houses filled with stuffed animals. However in recent years, taxidermy has emerged from the shadows as a collecting area in its own right and in the United Kingdom there are now dealers who deal only in taxidermy. In Victorian times, taxidermists performed a valuable service, bringing wildlife into homes and allowing the inhabitants to see real birds and mammals at close quarters. They could also create trophies to provide mementoes of a good day's fishing or hunting. The value of taxidermy specimens is enhanced by the presence of an original label detailing when and where the specimen was obtained and by a trade label of the taxidermist, the most sought after being Rowland Ward of London. In assessing a taxidermied specimen, the potential buyer should carefully study the colours and brightness of the specimen, the eyes, the detail of the groundwork, style and condition of the case and the rarity of the species. Worm or insect eaten specimens, fading, and other damage substantially reduce the value of taxidermied items.

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These items are not for sale and the descriptions, images and prices are for reference purposes only.

A polar bear skin rug with taxidermy head on felt backing, early 20th century. 260 cm long, 200 cm wide.

A silver mounted polar bear skull with gaping jaws and three removable silver beakers. 25 cm high, 31 cm long. The skull was part of the Archive of Gordon Burt, OBE (Christie's Australia, 28 November 1996, Lot 472). Gordon Burt was the Engineer on the 1925

A polar bear skin rug, with fully taxidermied head, 220 cm long, Nb: This Item requires a Cites certificate for export. This lot cannot be shipped to the USA or Territories

A Black Bear skin rug with taxidermy head on a felt backing, early 20th century. 140 x 153 cm

Antique Canadian 2 metre bear skin rug, claws intact, head mounted on velvet felt padding

Antique black bear, head mounted rug on red felt, 1.8 metres long

Antique baby black bear head, mounted on blue felt, 1.65 metres long

Antique grizzly bear skin rug, head mounted on cream felt, 2.1 metres long

Huge bear skin rug mounted on red felt padding, head mounted length 2.5 metres

Canadian grizzly bear full standing mount on naturalistic scenery, real claws, 2.2 metres tall

Russian kamchatka bear full body mount in attacking standing pose mounted on solid American oak cabinet in naturalistic scene, 9 ft tall

Antique North American black bear, full mount standing on natural snow scene

A taxidermied polar bear skin rug with head, teeth and claws, wear and repairs in places, missing three claws and one claw missing the tip, 217 cm long

Taxidermied polar bear skin rug with full head mount, some claws missing, wear to pelt, 200 cm length approximately

Rare alaskan grizzly bear skull with tag/permit attached, length 40 cm

North American black bear skin rug mounted on double felt padding

North American black bear skin rug with mounted head and clawed feet on velvet felt padding

North American black bear, circa 1950, full body taxidermy in upright attacking pose (1.5m standing)

A bear skin rug, the mounted head with open mouth, the paws complete with all claws, dark brown dominant colourway with tan highlights, the brown and black cloth backing with fine zig-zag fringe. Length 1250

An old taxidermied Asian brown bear head, shoulder mount with open mouth showing teeth, white band to his neck, mounted on a mahogany oval plaque back

A Canadian black bear skin rug full head mount with red felt edging. Length 149 cm

A full mount taxidermied brown bear, modelled standing on her hind legs on a rocky plinth base. Height including base 1480. Ex. Wellington Zoo, 196.4 cm

An impressive half mounted bear skin, the head in full mount with open mouth showing teeth, complete with claws, the conforming red cloth fringing with hand stitched grey backing, complete with taxidermist's label for 'Tocher and Tocher Taxidermists, Fraze

A collection of 20 Kodiak bear claws the claws were salvaged from the original full bear skin rug which had deteriorated.

A grizzly bear skin rug, origin North America, with head mount on double felt padding. Height 170 cm. Width 170 cm

A Victorian polar bear skin rug, with head mount and claws on velvet padding. Length 220 cm. Width 190 cm

A fully mounted taxidermied brown bear standing on her back legs with an open mouth, arms outstretched. Height on plinth base 1420. Ex Wellington Zoo 1964. See back cover

A young North American bear rug, in cinnamon, with fully mounted head, mounted on felt backing. Width 295 cm.

A rare Canadian black bear, mid 20th century, fully mounted, standing on its hind legs in rearing position in attacking stance with mouth fully open, lenght 65 cm. Height 156 cm.

An alaskan bear skull, taken by Gerald Martin at Kulu Island Se Alaska, together with a phallus from a brown bear and a black bear, 17 cm. Length, 31 cm. Width, 18 cm height.

A rare record grizzly bear skull, shot by Bob Penfold in North America. Length 46.5 cm. Width 24 cm. Height 20 cm

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