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 Danish style bronze figure, mid 20th century, artist unknown depicting a figure wrestling a swordfish limited edition 538/600. Signed monogram lower. Height 24 cm

3 sword fish bills, all mounted on plaques 'Concours Mondial De Peche a L'espadon, Dakar 1980'

Two swordfish rostrum on metal stands, each approx 96 cm high

Sawfish rostrum with applied reptile skin sleeve to the base, decorated with shells and beads on a metal stand, West Papua, 91 cm high

Two swordfish bills, in fitted stands, together with a single sword fish bill (3). Height 75 cm 76 cm in stand, height 90 cm in stand

Pair of sawfish rostrum, mounted on stand (2). Height 149 cm, and 116 cm

A contemporary scrimshawed whale's tooth, with sailing ship and diving whale, detailed in black, blue and green highlights, signed Bill Cooey, c.1970, mounted on turned circular wood base. Length of tooth 12 cm

A large sawfish bill, the bill painted with aboriginal painting by de Groot. Length 26 cm

A set of two sawfish bills. Two individual bills, the longer hand painted with inscription 'Beachcomber, Jt8, Brisbane,1973'. Length 61 cm / 137 cm.

A Large And Magnificent Sawfish Bill, A very large, highly aesthetic and desirable example, 100 x 15 cm. Provenance: From an Australian collection

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