Diamond Tooth Taxidermy

Exquisite Taxidermy Art and Design

© 2013 Diamond Tooth Taxidermy
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About Beth Beverly


I am a State and Federally licensed taxidermist who graduated from the Pocono Institute of Taxidermy in 2010 with high marks. I have a deep respect for this craft and those who strive to preserve it.

It is my pleasure to work on any trophy mount, be it a shoulder, life-size, rug, or fish.

I accept custom orders for fantasy mounts, wearables, and bridal hair pieces.

Sculptural mounts and hats are available for rental provided they are in stock at time of inquiry.

Contact me describing your wish and I will be delighted to make it so.


Diamond Tooth Taxidermy Blog:



"You ain't never used a chainsaw before? Country virgin!"

Today we began airbrushing our fish.  I quickly realised that this is NOT my forte.  I actually prefer the way the fish look dried and pre-painted, no eyes.  Just shells of themselves.  Here's my Blue Gill:







Same fish, now with eyes and some coloring:







Her's my Perch, dried and pre-paint:







All fish have anal vents.  For a competition mount, omitting that feature would probably ruin any chances of placing.  Poop shoots are recreacted with sculpting epoxy.







Here is one of my Trouts with his artificial head and eyes:







Here is another Trout with original head and epoxy coating:







This Trout had a gimp fin; it was just a little nub.  Apparently this is a common defect in fish raised in hatcheries who are then released into lakes.  The hatcheries are cramped and they don't have room to properly mature.  Sometimes I think living in a city does that to people.



I replaced the offending part with a spare fin from another fish.







It was a bitter cold day, and windy to boot.  I took the scenic route home in an attempt to familiarize myself with the area.  I found a post office and a really intriguing property near the cabin where I'm staying called "tequila-ville".  I intend to walk by later and get a closer look, as well as photos.

"Here's some fish eye for your coffee."

My instructor finds my never-ending stream of inquiries amusing.  Can you blame me?  I'm trying to squeeze out every ounce of knowledge I possibly can from this scholastic adventure.



Today I worked on my two Blue Gills, and began a large trout on which I will be using an artificial head.



Carving such small forms in the foam is delicate work.  Thankfully my little hands are extraordinarily nimble.







After the skin is cleaned of all flesh, it's good to soak it for a bit.







All sewn up and carded!







blub blub blub.







After school I went into the barn and played on my hoop:











then took a walk back into the woods to see if  the deer corpse I'd dragged out there had been enjoyed.  By the looks of it, yes.  SOrry for the low quality picture; the sun had set and light was fading.







I had a quiet evening consisting of a long bath, laundry, and the movie "Infamous", at which I wept during the end.  I think being immersed in death has made me even more sympathetic to the rest of the world.  As long as they keep their distance.

"You're about to get real stinky."

Today we began the fish course.  The other student was absent so I got a head start, which wound up being a good thing since she works about twice as fast as I do.  I learned how to measure the fish properly and carve a form for it out of a simple block of blue foam.  I used a trout (a Brook trout I think, but I could be wrong; they all start to look the same to me).  Then I skinned it and cleaned out all the flesh, which was rather odorous.



Next came stretching the skin over the form and sewing it shut.  Fins were carded to set in place and the specimen put aside out to dry for three days.







I can honestly say the stench didn't bother me that much.  After a few minutes you just get used to it.  And yes, I was drinking coffee the entire time, grabbing for my white mug with my gut covered hand and thinking nothing of it.  I was perplexed that no one had wanted to eat these fish, but Mr. B informed me that one of the students from a year ago had caught so many that they did in fact eat them, about 5o of them and  the rest were frozen.  I guess after a certain amount of time they're rendered inedible due to freezer burn.  Am I crazy for looking at the guts in my hands and being tempted to shove the in my mouth?  Especially the cheek meat!  I remember visiting friends in Basque, when my husband and I went to Saint Sebastian and tried the eat of a fish's cheek on bread.  It was unpararelled oral delight.   I am eager to buy an entire fish back home and get some of that for myself, as well as a beautiful mount.



I mounted another trout, this one I added some motion to the form to make the fish seem to be swimming:







Next I carved a form for a Blue Gill.







They're much smaller than Trout and have very large scales which made skinning a challenge.







I opened up to my instructor a bit about what my intentions with taxidermy are, and he showed me some old books featuring "novelty taxidermy" which has been around for longer than I'd imagined.  Perhaps I was a Victorian in a past life!







That afternoon I practiced my hoop and then sat in the side room by the wood burning stove with the guys and worked on a cross word puzzle.  I had to shower the fish smell off before I could eat dinner (I have limits!) and enjoyed chicken with steamed brocoli and risotto for dinner, with cranberry cosmos.



Between the deer and moose meat given to me by my instructor and the royal treatment I receive from my hosts, I am officially being spoiled rotten.
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