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

A huia tail feather, traditional near black tone with white tip, colour matched shaft, no quill. Length 13 cm. Note the Huia was the largest species of N.Z. wattlebird, endemic to the North Island, becoming extinct in the early 20th century .

Huia Feather. Rare tail feather from extinct huia. Single huia feathers were highly valuable and exchanged for other valuable goods or given as tokens of friendship and respect. Length 7.6 cm. Width 1.1 cm. Possibly from Kenneth Athol Webster collection, N

A good rare Huia bird tail feather, of full size with traditional white tip and fine down type feathers towards the quill end, dark toned. Length 200. The Huia became extinct in the early 20th century due to rampant overhunting with worldwide demand by mus

A small huia feather, traditional black colourway with white tip. Length 9.5 cm

Huia feather, the huia's feathers were valued highly and exchanged for other valuable goods such as greenstone and shark teeth, or given as tokens of friendship and respect. Through this trade, the feathers reached the far north and the far south of New Ze

Pair of rare cased huia, in superb condition with both male and female huia perched on branches in a square glass display the huia is one of New Zealand's best known extinct birds because of its bill shape, its sheer beauty, and special place in Maori cult

A rare taxidermy huia bird, displayed perched on a branch. Complete with tail feathers, one eye missing. height 22 cm. Length 42 cm

A full huia tail feather, traditional white tip. Length 20.5 cm. Provenance: from the same family collection of Maori artefacts sold by Cordys, July 2006

Huia feather rare tail feather from extinct huia. Single huia feathers were highly valuable and exchanged for other valuable goods or given as tokens of friendship and respect. Length 20.1 cm. Width 5 cm

Huia feather rare tail feather from extinct huia. Single huia feathers were highly valuable and exchanged for other valuable goods or given as tokens of friendship and respect. Length 7.6 cm. Width 1.1 cm

Cased huia bird male huia bird in good condition perched on a branch in a glass display. The huia is one of New Zealand 's best known extinct birds because of its bill shape, its sheer beauty, and special place in Maori culture and oral tradition. The bird

Early 19th century huia bird feather feathers were stuck into the top knot by their quills. The tail feathers of the huia were regarded as the most valuable and were kept in Waka huia (treasure boxes). The huia bird is now extinct. Length 20 cm.

Early 19th century huia bird feather feathers were stuck into the top knot by their quills. The tail feathers of the huia were regarded as the most valuable and were kept in Waka huia (treasure boxes). The huia bird is now extinct. Length 19.5 cm.

Early 19th century huia bird feather feathers were stuck into the top knot by their quills. The tail feathers of the huia were regarded as the most valuable and were kept in Waka huia (treasure boxes). The huia bird is now extinct. Length 20 cm.

Early 19th century huia bird feather feathers were stuck into the top knot by their quills. The tail feathers of the huia were regarded as the most valuable and were kept in Waka huia (treasure boxes). The huia bird is now extinct. Length 21 cm.

Huia bird feather. Feathers were stuck into the hair topknot by their quills, the tail feathers of the huia were regarded as the most valuable and were kept in waka huia treasure boxes, the huia bird is now extinct This lot also comes with a 3 cm huia brea

Huia bird feather. Feathers were stuck into the hair topknot by their quills, the tail feathers of the huia were regarded as the most valuable and were kept in waka huia treasure boxes, the huia bird is now extinct length 14.5 cm

Huia bird feather. Feathers were stuck into the hair topknot by their quills, the tail feathers of the huia were regarded as the most valuable and were kept in waka huia treasure boxes, the huia bird is now extinct. Length 20 cm

Huia bird feather. Feathers were stuck into the topknot by their quills, the tail feathers of the huia were regarded as the most valuable and were kept in waka huia treasure boxes, the huia bird is now extinct. Length 20 cm

Cased huia bird feather. Feathers were stuck into the topknot by their quills, the tail feathers of the huia were regarded as the most valuable and were kept in waka huia treasure boxes, the huia bird is now extinct. Length 20 cm of feather

A rare cased pair of taxidermy Huia birds (male and female) in naturalistic setting. Height 55 cm. Width 49 cm

Huia feather, a fine feather in very good condition. Gifted to the vendors grandfather prior to World War one. Height 20 cm. Width 4.6 cm

Huia feather, a fine feather in very good condition. Gifted to the vendors grandfather prior to World War one. Height 20 cm. Width 4.5 cm.

Huia feather, a fine feather in very good condition. Gifted to the vendors grandfather prior to World War one. Height 20 cm. Width 5.2 cm.

A Huia feather, framed and mounted under glass, wooden black frame. Length of feather 19 cm

Pair of Huia, with both male and female Huia perched on branches facing each other

Pair of Huia and kiwi cased, with both male and female Huia perched on branches and a North Island brown kiwi. Height 50 cm. Width 70 cm. Depth 38 cm

Single Huia feather, the Huia's feathers were valued highly and exchanged for other valuable goods such as greenstone and shark teeth, or given as tokens of friendship and respect. Through this trade, the feathers reached the far north and the far south of

Huia feather, the huia's feathers were highly valued and exchanged for other valuable goods such as greenstone and shark teeth, or given as tokens of friendship and respect. Through this trade, the feathers reached the far north and the far south of New Ze

Captain Cook period Maori wooden waka huia box with huia feather. A superb specimen of Maori carving of rare large oblong shape with lid. A similar waka huia box is in the British Museum. This waka huia feather box also contains one rare huia bird feather.

A pair of extinct adult male and female huia, on rudimentary cage perches bearing labels dated, 1874 and inscribed, 'Wanganua' under a glass dome. Height 52 cm

An extinct adult male huia, standing on a twig perch with grass tuft above a sandy base, in an architectural mahogany four glass case. Height 62 cm

Taxidermy Huia specimen, extremely rare taxidermy example of the now extinct Huia. Some insect damage evident.

Single Huia feather, the Huia's feathers were valued highly and exchanged for other valuable goods such as greenstone and shark teeth, or given as tokens of friendship and respect. Through this trade, the feathers reached the far north and the far south of

.