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 mounted sperm whales tooth, inscribed plaque, tooth of a sperm whale, caught off Albany West Australia.

A carved whale's tooth penguin statue, North American, Inuit. 15 cm

Two whale's teeth, 18/19th century. 10 cm and 14 cm

A large natural whale's tooth, evidence of native abrasion. Length 18 cm

A large natural whale's tooth, with splattered and splashed reddish staining. Provenance as above. Length 17 cm

Group of whalebone bodkins, implements & whales tooth clamp. 19th century. (7 items)

Sperm whale teeth. Group of 21 ranging in size from 12 cm to 16 cm

Egg cruet, Tasmanian blackwood stand with 5 whale tooth egg cups together with 8 assorted whalebone spoons, mid 19th century. 23 cm high

A collection of six various whale teeth, late 19th/20th century, the largest 16 cm

An old sperm whale tooth, cutting evident at widest end, old label affixed. Length 12.5 cm

An old sperm whale tooth, natural polished tip end. Length 13 cm

A sperm whale tooth, natural curved form, semi-polished. Length 14 cm

Three ivory whales teeth. Lengths 12.5 cm. 13.5 cm. 13.8 cm total weight 556grams

Whales teeth: collection of 42 teeth ranging in size from 4 cm to 15 cm, plus a pair of horns. (44 items)

Three marine ivory whales teeth, Purchased Albany c.1960-1970's. Lengths 13.5 cm-15 cm, total weight 733grams

A finely patined whales tooth, 19th century or earlier, with holes for carrying on a thong, 20 cm long

An undecorated whales tooth, 19th century, with leather thong

A large whales tooth, 19th century, 16.5 cm long

A sailmaker's gimlet with whale tooth handle, 19th century, 13.5 cm long, 9 cm wide

Two large and one smaller whales teeth, 19th century, one with engraved line, 16 cm high, the other undecorated, 17 cm high, and one other, 13 cm high

An old sperm whale tooth, semi-polished finish with natural grooves evident. Length 14.5 cm

A Scimshaw sperm whale tooth engraved with a Carnauba tree and Clove bush. Height 13 cm

A large sperm whale tooth, circa 1880 bears label from the Australian Museum inspection 2/10/2012 19 cm

Sperm whale tooth stilletto decorated with baleen and cedar rings

Sperm whale tooth thimble, engraved 'Love and Virtue'