Taxidermy is the preserving of an animal's body via mounting (over an armature) or stuffing, for the purpose of display or study. Animals are often, but not always, portrayed in a lifelike state. The word taxidermy describes the process of preserving the animal, but the word is also used to describe the end product, which are called taxidermy mounts or referred to simply as "taxidermy".

The word taxidermy is derived from the Greek words taxis and derma.[1] Taxis means "arrangement", and derma means "skin" (the dermis).[1] The word taxidermy translates to "arrangement of skin".[1]

Taxidermy is practiced primarily on vertebrates[2] (mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and less commonly on amphibians) but can also be done to larger insects and arachnids[3] under some circumstances. Taxidermy takes on a number of forms and purposes including hunting trophies and natural history museum displays. Museums use taxidermy as a method to record species, including those that are extinct and threatened,[4] in the form of study skins and life-size mounts. Taxidermy is sometimes also used as a means to memorialize pets.[5]

A person who practices taxidermy is called a taxidermist. They may practice professionally, catering to museums and sportsman (hunters and fishermen), or as amateurs (hobbyists). A taxidermist is aided by familiarity with anatomy, sculpture, painting, and tanning.

Primate Taxidermy, Rahmat International Wildlife Museum and Gallery
Primate and pachyderm taxidermy at the Rahmat International Wildlife Museum & Gallery, Medan, Sumatra, Indonesia
External video
Taxidermy dog "Death and Taxidermy" video
Death and Taxidermy, Mariel Carr, Science History Institute
Wilmer W. Tanner with museum-cleaned
Wilmer W. Tanner with a mounted tiger at the Brigham Young University Life Sciences Museum


Theodore Roosevelt's taxidermy kit, private collection

Tanning and early stuffing techniques

Preserving animal skins has been practiced for a long time. Embalmed animals have been found with Egyptian mummies. Although embalming incorporates the use of lifelike poses, it is not considered taxidermy. In the Middle Ages, crude examples of taxidermy were displayed by astrologers and apothecaries. The earliest methods of preservation of birds for natural history cabinets were published in 1748 by Reaumur in France. Techniques for mounting were described in 1752 by M. B. Stollas. There were several pioneers of taxidermy in France, Germany, Denmark and England around this time. For a while, clay was used to shape some of the soft parts, but this made specimens heavy.[6]

By the 19th century, almost every town had a tannery business.[7] In the 19th century, hunters began bringing their trophies to upholstery shops, where the upholsterers would actually sew up the animal skins and stuff them with rags and cotton. The term "stuffing" or a "stuffed animal" evolved from this crude form of taxidermy. Professional taxidermists prefer the term "mounting" to "stuffing". More sophisticated cotton-wrapped wire bodies supporting sewn-on cured skins soon followed. In France, Louis Dufresne, taxidermist at the Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle from 1793, popularized arsenical soap in an article in Nouveau dictionnaire d'histoire naturelle (1803–1804). This technique enabled the museum to build the greatest collection of birds in the world.[8]

Dufresne's methods spread to England in the early 19th century, where updated and non-toxic methods of preservation were developed by some of the leading naturalists of the day, including Rowland Ward and Montague Brown.[9] Ward established one of the earliest taxidermy firms, Rowland Ward Ltd. of Piccadilly. However, the art of taxidermy remained relatively undeveloped, and the specimens that were created remained stiff and unconvincing.[10]

Taxidermy as art

The golden age of taxidermy was during the Victorian era, when mounted animals became a popular part of interior design and decor.[11] English ornithologist John Hancock is considered to be the father of modern taxidermy.[12] An avid collector of birds, which he would shoot himself, he began modelling them with clay and casting in plaster.

For the Great Exhibition of 1851 in London, he mounted a series of stuffed birds as an exhibit. They generated much interest among the public and scientists alike who considered them as superior to earlier models and were regarded as the first lifelike and artistic specimens on display.[13] A judge remarked that Hancock's exhibit "... will go far towards raising the art of taxidermy to a level with other arts which have hitherto held higher pretensions".[14]

Hancock's display sparked great national interest in taxidermy, and amateur and professional collections for public view proliferated rapidly. Displays of birds were particularly common in middle-class Victorian homes – even Queen Victoria amassed an impressive bird collection. Taxidermists were also increasingly used by the bereaved owners of dead pets to 'resurrect' them.[15]

Anthropomorphic taxidermy

Walter Potter's Rabbit School, 1930s

In the late 19th century a style known as anthropomorphic taxidermy became popular. A 'Victorian whimsy', mounted animals were dressed as people or displayed as if engaged in human activities. An early example of this genre was displayed by Herman Ploucquet, from Stuttgart, Germany, at the Great Exhibition in London.[16]

The best-known practitioner in this genre was the English taxidermist Walter Potter, whose most famous work was The Death and Burial of Cock Robin. Among his other scenes were "a rat's den being raided by the local police rats ... [a] village school ... featuring 48 little rabbits busy writing on tiny slates, while the Kittens' Tea Party displayed feline etiquette and a game of croquet."[17] Apart from the simulations of human situations, he had also added examples of bizarrely deformed animals such as two-headed lambs and four-legged chickens. Potter's museum was so popular that an extension was built to the platform at Bramber railway station.[18]

Other Victorian taxidermists known for their iconic anthropomorphic taxidermy work are William Hart and his Son Edward Hart.[19] They gained recognition with their famous series of dioramas featuring boxing squirrels. Both William and Edward created multiple sets of these dioramas. One 4-piece set of boxing squirrel dioramas (circa 1850) sold at auction in 2013 for record prices. The four dioramas were created as a set (with each diorama portraying the squirrels at a different stage during their boxing match), however, the set was broken up and each was sold separately at the same auction. The set was one of a number they created over the years featuring boxing squirrels.[19]

Famous examples of modern anthropomorphic taxidermy include the work of artist Adele Morse who gained international attention with her "Stoned Fox" sculpture series[20] and the work of artist Sarina Brewer, known for her Siamese twin squirrels and flying monkeys partaking in human activities.[21]

Musk oxen at Cabelas
Mounted muskoxen posed on artificial snow

20th century

Mother moose and calf diorama - Manitoba Museum (6908025191)
Mother moose and calf diorama, Manitoba Museum

In the early 20th century, taxidermy was taken forward under the leadership of artists such as Carl Akeley, James L. Clark, William T. Hornaday, Coleman Jonas, Fredrick and William Kaempfer, and Leon Pray. These and other taxidermists developed anatomically accurate figures which incorporated every detail in artistically interesting poses, with mounts in realistic settings and poses that were considered more appropriate for the species. This was quite a change from the caricatures popularly offered as hunting trophies.

Additional modern uses of Taxidermy have been the use of "Faux Taxidermy" or fake animal heads that draw on the inspiration of traditional taxidermy. Decorating with sculpted fake animal heads that are painted in different colors has become a popular trend in interior design.[22]

Rogue taxidermy

Rogue taxidermy (sometimes referred to as "taxidermy art"[23]) is a form of mixed media sculpture.[21][24] Rogue taxidermy art references traditional trophy or natural history museum taxidermy, but is not always constructed out of taxidermied animals,[21][24] it can be constructed entirely from synthetic materials.[21][25] Additionally, rogue taxidermy is not necessarily figurative, it can be abstract and does not need to resemble an animal.[21] It can be a small decorative object or a large-scale room-sized installation. There is a very broad spectrum of styles within the genre, some of which falls into the category of mainstream art.[21][26] "Rogue taxidermy" describes a wide variety of work, including work that is classified and exhibited as fine art.[25] Neither the term, nor the genre, emerged from the world of traditional taxidermy.[24] The genre was born from forms of fine art that utilize some of the components found in the construction of a traditional taxidermy mount.[24] The term "rogue taxidermy" was coined in 2004 by an artist collective called The Minnesota Association of Rogue Taxidermists.[25][27] The Minneapolis-based group was founded by artists Sarina Brewer, Scott Bibus, and Robert Marbury as a means to unite their respective mediums and differing styles of sculpture.[27][28] The definition of rogue taxidermy set forth by the individuals who formed the genre (Brewer, Bibus, and Marbury) is: "A genre of pop-surrealist art characterized by mixed media sculptures containing conventional taxidermy-related materials that are used in an unconventional manner".[23][29][30] Interest in the collective's work gave rise to an artistic movement referred to as the Rogue Taxidermy art movement, or alternately, the Taxidermy Art movement.[24][29][31][32] Apart from describing a genre of fine art,[24][21][31] the term "rogue taxidermy" has expanded in recent years and become an adjective applied to unorthodox forms of traditional taxidermy such as anthropomorphic mounts and composite mounts where two or more animals are spliced together.[33][34] (e.g.; sideshow gaffs of conjoined "freak" animals and mounts of jackalopes or other fictional creatures) In addition to being the impetus for the art movement, the inception of the genre also marked a resurgence of interest in conventional (traditional) forms of taxidermy.[33][34]


Traditional skin-mount

The methods taxidermists practice have been improved over the last century, heightening taxidermic quality and lowering toxicity. The animal is first skinned in a process similar to removing the skin from a chicken prior to cooking. This can be accomplished without opening the body cavity, so the taxidermist usually does not see internal organs or blood. Depending on the type of skin, preserving chemicals are applied or the skin is tanned. It is then either mounted on a mannequin made from wood, wool and wire, or a polyurethane form. Clay is used to install glass eyes. Forms and eyes are commercially available from a number of suppliers. If not, taxidermists carve or cast their own forms.[35]

Taxidermists seek to continually maintain their skills to ensure attractive, lifelike results. Mounting an animal has long been considered an art form, often involving months of work; not all modern taxidermists trap or hunt for prize specimens.[36]

Animal specimens can be frozen, then thawed at a later date to be skinned and tanned. Numerous measurements are taken of the body. A traditional method that remains popular today involves retaining the original skull and leg bones of a specimen and using these as the basis to create a mannequin made primarily from wood wool (previously tow or hemp wool was used) and galvanised wire. Another method is to mould the carcass in plaster, and then make a copy of the animal using one of several methods. A final mould is then made of polyester resin and glass cloth, from which a polyurethane form is made for final production. The carcass is then removed and the mould is used to produce a cast of the animal called a 'form'. Forms can also be made by sculpting the animal first in clay. Many companies produce stock forms in various sizes. Glass eyes are then usually added to the display, and in some cases, artificial teeth, jaws, tongue, or for some birds, artificial beaks and legs can be used.

Freeze-dried mount

Freeze-dried rattlesnake
Example of dermestid beetle damage to a freeze-dried taxidermy mount of a rattlesnake

An increasingly popular trend is to freeze dry the animal. For all intents and purposes, a freeze-dried mount is a mummified animal. The internal organs are removed during preparation; however, all other tissue remains in the body. (The skeleton and all accompanying musculature is still beneath the surface of the skin) The animal is positioned into the desired pose, then placed into the chamber of a special freeze drying machine designed specifically for this application. The machine freezes the animal and also creates a vacuum in the chamber. Pressure in the chamber helps vaporize moisture in the animal's body, allowing it to dry out. The rate of drying depends on vapor pressure. (The higher the pressure, the faster the specimen dries.)[37] Vapor pressure is determined by temperature of the chamber; the higher the temperature, the higher the vapor pressure is at a given vacuum.[37] The length of the dry-time is important because rapid freezing creates less tissue distortion (i.e.; shrinkage, warping, and wrinkling)[37] The process can be done with reptiles, birds, and small mammals such as cats, rodents, and some dogs. Large specimens may require up to six months in the freeze dryer before they are completely dry. Freeze drying is the most popular type of pet preservation. This is because it is the least invasive in terms of what is done to the animal's body after death, which is a concern of owners (Most owners do not opt for a traditional skin mount). In the case of large pets, such as dogs and cats, freeze drying is also the best way to capture the animal's expression as it looked in life (another important concern of owners). Freeze drying equipment is costly and requires much upkeep. The process is also time-consuming; therefore, freeze drying is generally an expensive method to preserve an animal. The drawback to this method is that freeze-dried mounts are extremely susceptible to insect damage. This is because they contain large areas of dried tissue (meat and fat) for insects to feed upon. Traditional mounts are far less susceptible because they contain virtually no residual tissues (or none at all). Regardless of how well a taxidermy mount is prepared, all taxidermy is susceptible to insect damage. Taxidermy mounts are targeted by the same beetles and fabric moths that destroy wool sweaters and fur coats and that infest grains and flour in pantries.[38]

Reproduction mount

Reproduction rhino head
Reproduction mount of a rhinoceros made of fiberglass

Some methods of creating a trophy mount do not involve preserving the actual body of the animal. Instead, detailed photos and measurements are taken of the animal so a taxidermist can create an exact replica in resin or fiberglass that can be displayed in place of the real animal. No animals are killed in the creation of this type of trophy mount. One situation where this is practiced is in the world of sport fishing where catch and release is becoming increasingly prevalent. Reproduction mounts are commonly created for (among others) trout, bass, and large saltwater species such as the swordfish. Another situation where reproduction trophies are created is when endangered species are involved. Endangered and protected species, such as the rhinoceros, are hunted with rifles loaded with tranquilizer darts rather than real bullets. While the animal is unconscious, the hunter poses for photos with the animal while it is measured for the purpose of creating a replica, or to establish what size of prefabricated fiberglass trophy head can be purchased to most closely approximate the actual animal. The darted animal is not harmed. The hunter then displays the fiberglass head on the wall in lieu of the real animal's head to commemorate the experience of the hunt.

Re-creation mount

Re-creation mounts are accurate life-size representations of either extant or extinct species that are created using materials not found on the animal being rendered. They utilize the fur, feathers, and skin of another species of animal. According to the National Taxidermy Association: "Re-creations, for the purpose of this [competition] category, are defined as renderings which include no natural parts of the animal portrayed. A re-creation may include original carvings and sculptures. A re-creation may use natural parts, provided the parts are not from the species being portrayed. For instance, a re-creation eagle could be constructed using turkey feathers, or a cow hide could be used to simulate African game".[39] A famous example of a re-creation mount is a giant panda created by taxidermist Ken Walker that he constructed out of dyed and bleached black bear fur.[40]

Study skins

A study skin is a taxidermic zoological specimen prepared in a minimalistic fashion that is concerned only with preserving the animal's skin, not the shape of the animal's body.[41] As the name implies, study skins are used for scientific study (research), and are housed mainly by museums. A study skin's sole purpose is to preserve data, not to replicate an animal in a lifelike state.[41] Museums keep large collections of study skins in order to conduct comparisons of physical characteristics to other study skins of the same species. Study skins are also kept because DNA can be extracted from them when needed at any point in time.[42]

A study skin's preparation is extremely basic. After the animal is skinned, fat is methodically scraped off the underside of the hide. The underside of the hide is then rubbed with borax or cedar dust to help it dry faster. The animal is then stuffed with cotton and sewn up. Mammals are laid flat on their belly. Birds are prepared lying on their back. Study skins are dried in these positions to keep the end product as slender and streamlined as possible so large numbers of specimens can be stored side-by-side in flat file drawers, while occupying a minimum amount of space.[43] Since study skins are not prepared with aesthetics in mind they do not have imitation eyes like other taxidermy, and their cotton filling is visible in their eye openings.[44]

2013-03 Naturkundemuseum Berlin Taxidermie Eichhörnchen Sciurus vulgaris anagoria 0

1. Measurements are collected

2013-03 Naturkundemuseum Berlin Taxidermie Eichhörnchen Sciurus vulgaris anagoria 1

2. Animal is Skinned. Notes on internal organs are recorded

2013-03 Naturkundemuseum Berlin Taxidermie Eichhörnchen Sciurus vulgaris anagoria 2

3. Skin is stuffed with cotton

2013-03 Naturkundemuseum Berlin Taxidermie Eichhörnchen Sciurus vulgaris anagoria 3

4. Completed study skin is labeled with a data tag

Notable taxidermists

See also


  1. ^ a b c Harper, Douglas. "taxidermy". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
  2. ^ Stephen P. Rogers; Mary Ann Schmidt; Thomas Gütebier (1989). An Annotated Bibliography on Preparation, Taxidermy, and Collection Management of Vertebrates with Emphasis on Birds. Carnegie Museum of Natural History. ISBN 978-0-911239-32-4.
  3. ^ Daniel Carter Beard (1890). The American Boys Handy Book. C. Scribner's Sons. pp. 242, 243.
  4. ^ "Life After Death: Extinct Animals Immortalized With Taxidermy". Retrieved 2015-07-16.
  5. ^ Pierce Ph.D, Jessica. "All Dogs Go to Heaven". Psychology Today. Sussex Publishers, LLC. Retrieved 2 March 2017.
  6. ^ Mantagu Browne (31 July 2015). Practical Taxidermy - A Manual of Instruction to the Amateur in Collecting, Preserving, and Setting up Natural History Specimens. Read Country Book. ISBN 978-1-4733-7689-2.
  7. ^ Various Authors (26 August 2016). Taxidermy Vol.12 Tanning - Outlining the Various Methods of Tanning. Read Books Limited. pp. 3–. ISBN 978-1-4733-5355-8.
  8. ^ C. J. Maynard (25 August 2017). Manual of Taxidermy - A Complete Guide in Collecting and Preserving Birds and Mammals. Read Books Limited. ISBN 978-1-4733-3900-2.
  9. ^ "11 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Taxidermy". 2012-11-13. Retrieved 2017-09-13.
  10. ^ Various Authors (26 August 2016). Taxidermy Vol.10 Collecting Specimens – The Collection and Displaying Taxidermy Specimens. Tobey Press. ISBN 978-1-4733-5354-1.
  11. ^ Davie, Oliver (1900). Methods in the art of taxidermy. Philadelphia: David McKay.
  12. ^ Leon Pray (31 July 2015). Taxidermy. Read Books Limited. pp. 8–. ISBN 978-1-4733-7688-5.
  13. ^ "John Hancock: A Biography by T. Russell Goddard (1929)". Archived from the original on 2013-12-14.
  14. ^ "Taxidermy Articles".
  15. ^ "Morbid Outlook – Memento Mori Animalia".
  16. ^ Henning, Michelle (2007). "Anthropomorphic taxidermy and the death of nature: The curious art of Hermann Ploucquet, Walter Potter and Charles Waterton" (PDF). Victorian Literature and Culture. 35 (2): 663–678. doi:10.1017/S1060150307051704.
  17. ^ Morris, Pat (7 December 2007). "Animal magic". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2009-02-14.
  18. ^ Ketteman, Tony. "Mr Potter of Bramber". Retrieved 2009-02-14.
  19. ^ a b "Stuffed Squirrels Fight for High Prices". Kovels Auction House. Retrieved 12 October 2017.
  20. ^ Robert Marbury (2014). Taxidermy Art: A Rogue's Guide to the Work, the Culture, and How to Do It Yourself. Artisan. p. 14. ISBN 978-1-57965-558-7.
  21. ^ a b c d e f g Rivera, Erica (8 April 2016). "Crave Profile: Sarina Brewer and Rogue Taxidermy". CraveOnline. CraveOnlineLLC. Retrieved 12 December 2016.
  22. ^
  23. ^ a b Ode, Kim (15 October 2014). "Rogue Taxidermy, at the crossroads of art and wildlife". Variety section. Star Tribune. Retrieved 12 December 2016.
  24. ^ a b c d e f Lundy, Patricia (16 February 2016). "The Renaissance of Handcrafts and Fine Arts Celebrates Dark Culture". Dirge magazine. Dirge Magazine. Archived from the original on 12 January 2017. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  25. ^ a b c Langston, Erica (30 March 2016). "When Taxidermy Goes Rogue". Audubon. National Audubon Society. Archived from the original on 11 April 2016. Retrieved 24 November 2017.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  26. ^ "The Curious Occurrence Of Taxidermy In Contemporary Art". Brown University. David Winton Bell Galley. 23 January 2016. Retrieved 24 November 2017.
  27. ^ a b Voon, Claire (14 October 2014). "Women Are Dominating the Rogue Taxidermy Scene". Vice. Archived from the original on 11 October 2017. Retrieved 19 January 2018 – via maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  28. ^ "Topcik, Joel (3 January 2005). "Head of Goat, Tail of Fish, More Than a Touch of Weirdness". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 29 May 2015. Retrieved 19 January 2018.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  29. ^ a b Gyldenstrom, Freja (17 June 2017). "Mortality and Taxidermy in Art". Culturised. Archived from the original on 3 October 2017. Retrieved 19 January 2018.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  30. ^ "The History of Rogue Taxidermy". The Taxidermy Art of Sarina Brewer. Retrieved 19 January 2018.
  31. ^ a b Evans, Hayley (22 February 2016). "Rogue Taxidermy Artists Who Create Imaginative Sculptures". illusion magazine. Scene 360 LLC. Archived from the original on 18 October 2017. Retrieved 19 January 2018.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  32. ^ Niittynen, Miranda (2015). "Animal Magic; Sculpting Queer Encounters through Rogue Taxidermy Art" (PDF). Gender Forum: Internet Journal for Gender Studies. 55: pp.14-34. ISSN 1613-1878. Archived from the original on 2 October 2017. Retrieved 19 January 2018.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  33. ^ a b Leggett, David (7 April 2017). "Chimaera Taxidermy - The Weird and the Wonderful". CataWiki. CataWiki Auction House. Archived from the original on 19 January 2018. Retrieved 19 January 2018.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  34. ^ a b "Dead Animals into Art". CBC Radio. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. 25 October 2017. Archived from the original on 26 October 2017. Retrieved 19 January 2018.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  35. ^ Melissa Milgrom (8 March 2010). Still Life: Adventures in Taxidermy. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. ISBN 0-547-48705-3.
  36. ^ Morgan Mathews (director) (2005). Taxidermy: Stuff the World (documentary film). Century Films.
  37. ^ a b c "Feeze Dry Taxidermy". Retrieved 5 May 2017.
  38. ^ "Identifying Museum Insect Pest damage" (PDF). National Park Service. November 2008. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
  39. ^ "World Taxidermy Competition categories". Breakthrough Magazine, Inc. 2015. Retrieved 13 December 2016.
  40. ^ Rowell, Meloday (14 September 2014). "Exotic, Extinct, and On Display: Robert Clark's Take on Taxidermy". National Geographic Partners, LLC. Retrieved 13 December 2016.
  41. ^ a b "Study Skins". Colchester & Ipswich Museums. Retrieved 13 December 2016.
  42. ^ Kurihara, Nozomi (11 February 2013). "Utility of hair shafts from study skins for mitochondrial DNA analysis". Biolotechnology Information. 12 (4): 5396–404. doi:10.4238/2013.November.11.1. PMID 24301912.
  43. ^ "Taxidermy". Queensland Museum Network. The State Queensland. Retrieved 22 June 2018.
  44. ^ Rogers, Steve. "Relaxing Skins". Bird Collections Bulletin Board. Museum of Natural Science, Louisiana State University. Retrieved 7 November 2017.

Further reading

External links

Banff Park Museum

The Banff Park Museum National Historic Site, located in downtown Banff, Alberta, is an exhibition space associated with Banff National Park. The museum was established in 1895 to house an exhibit of taxidermy mounted specimens of animals, plants and minerals associated with the park. The museum building, constructed in 1903 to the design of territorial government engineer John Stocks, is an early example of the rustic style of architecture that was becoming popular in the parks of North America.

In 1896 Norman Bethune Sanson was hired as the museum curator. Serving until 1932, Sanson was responsible for expanding the collection from eight mammals, 259 birds, a turtle and a variety of mineral and botanical specimens to the present collection of 5000 specimens. The building, described as a "railway pagoda", uses exposed log framing and rustic detailing. It is the oldest building maintained by Parks Canada. The museum was declared a National Historic Site of Canada in 1985 and was classified as historic structure the following year.From 1905 to 1937 a small zoo operated on the grounds to the rear of the museum, featuring a small collection of animals, many of which were exotic or non-native. At its peak in 1914 there were 36 birds in an aviary and 50 mammals. The zoo declined in the 1930s, was closed in 1937, and was demolished in 1939. Forty-six animals were donated to the Calgary Zoo at the Banff Zoo's closing, including wolves, lynx, and black, cinnamon and polar bears.


Banyoles (Catalan pronunciation: [bəˈɲɔləs]) is a city of 17,309 inhabitants (2006) located in the province of Girona in northeastern Catalonia, Spain.

The town is the capital of the Catalan comarca "Pla de l'Estany". Although an established industrial centre many of the inhabitants commute to nearby Girona (12 km to the south).

Banyoles is most famous for the Lake of Banyoles, a natural lake located in a tectonic depression. It was the venue for the rowing events in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics as well as the "negro of Banyoles", a controversial piece of taxidermy.

With a superb natural environment for the practice of sport, each year a triathlon Premium European Cup (or even an IFC Canoe Marathon World Championship in 2010) is held in Banyoles, the hometown of the Spanish 2011 Champion Carolina Routier. National and regional events take place as well throughout the year, such as the Spanish triathlon championship and the Championship of Catalonia .

Barry (dog)

Barry der Menschenretter (1800–1814), also known as Barry, was a dog of a breed which was later called the St. Bernard that worked as a mountain rescue dog in Switzerland and Italy for the Great St Bernard Hospice. He predates the modern St. Bernard, and was lighter built than the modern breed. He has been described as the most famous St. Bernard, as he was credited with saving more than 40 lives during his lifetime, hence his byname Menschenretter meaning "people rescuer" in German.

The legend surrounding him was that he was killed while attempting a rescue; however, this is untrue. Barry retired to Bern, Switzerland and after his death his body was passed into the care of the Natural History Museum of Bern. His skin has been preserved through taxidermy although his skull was modified in 1923 to match the Saint Bernard of that time period. His story and name have been used in literary works, and a monument to him stands in the Cimetière des Chiens near Paris. At the hospice, one dog has always been named Barry in his honor; and since 2004, the Foundation Barry du Grand Saint Bernard has been set up to take over the responsibility for breeding dogs from the hospice.

Bird collections

Bird collections are curated repositories of scientific specimens consisting of birds and their parts. They are a research resource for ornithology, the science of birds, and for other scientific disciplines in which information about birds is useful. These collections are archives of avian diversity and serve the diverse needs of scientific researchers, artists, and educators.

Collections may include a variety of preparation types emphasizing preservation of feathers, skeletons, soft tissues, or (increasingly) some combination thereof. Modern collections range in size from small teaching collections, such as one might find at a nature reserve visitor center or small college, to large research collections of the world's major natural history museums, the

largest of which contain hundreds of thousands of specimens. Bird collections function much like libraries, with specimens arranged in drawers and cabinets in taxonomic order, curated by scientists who oversee the maintenance, use, and growth of collections and make them available for study through visits or loans.

Conservation and restoration of fur objects

The conservation and restoration of fur objects is the preservation and protection of objects made from or containing fur. These pieces can include personal items like fur clothing or objects of cultural heritage that are housed in museums and collections. When dealing with the latter, a conservator-restorer often handles their care, whereas, for the public, professional furriers can be found in many neighborhoods.

Conservation and restoration of taxidermy

The conservation of taxidermy is the ongoing maintenance and preservation of zoological specimens that have been mounted or stuffed for display and study. Taxidermy specimens contain a variety of organic materials, such as fur, bone, feathers, skin, and wood, as well as inorganic materials, such as burlap, glass, and foam. Due to their composite nature, taxidermy specimens require special care and conservation treatments for the different materials.


The word diorama can either refer to a 19th-century mobile theatre device, or, in modern usage, a three-dimensional full-size or miniature model, sometimes enclosed in a glass showcase for a museum. Dioramas are often built by hobbyists as part of related hobbies such as military vehicle modeling, miniature figure modeling, or aircraft modeling.

Errol Fuller

Errol Fuller (born 19 June 1947) is an English writer and artist who lives in Tunbridge Wells, Kent. He was born in Blackpool, Lancashire, grew up in South London, and was educated at Addey and Stanhope School. He is the author of a series of books on extinction and extinct creatures.

Fiji mermaid

The Fiji mermaid (also Feejee mermaid) was an object composed of the torso and head of a juvenile monkey sewn to the back half of a fish. It was a common feature of sideshows where it was presented as the mummified body of a creature that was supposedly half mammal and half fish, a version of a mermaid. The original had fish scales with animal hair superimposed on its body with pendulous breasts on its chest. The mouth was wide open with its teeth bared. The right hand was against the right cheek, and the left tucked under its lower left jaw. This mermaid was supposedly caught near the Fiji Islands in the South Pacific. Several replicas and variations have also been made and exhibited under similar names and pretexts. P.T. Barnum exhibited the original in Barnum's American Museum in New York in 1842, but it then disappeared—likely destroyed in one of Barnum's many fires that destroyed his collections.


The jackalope is a mythical animal of North American folklore (a fearsome critter) described as a jackrabbit with antelope horns. The word jackalope is a portmanteau of jackrabbit and antelope. Many jackalope taxidermy mounts, including the original, are made with deer antlers.

In the 1930s, Douglas Herrick and his brother, hunters with taxidermy skills, popularized the American jackalope by grafting deer antlers onto a jackrabbit carcass and selling the combination to a local hotel in Douglas, Wyoming. Thereafter, they made and sold many similar jackalopes to a retail outlet in South Dakota, and another taxidermist continues to manufacture the horned rabbits in the 21st century. Stuffed and mounted, jackalopes are found in many bars and other places in the United States; stores catering to tourists sell jackalope postcards and other paraphernalia, and commercial entities in America and elsewhere have used the word jackalope or a jackalope logo as part of their marketing strategies. The jackalope has appeared in published stories, poems, television shows, video games, and a low-budget mockumentary film. The Wyoming Legislature has considered bills to make the jackalope the state's official mythological creature.

The underlying legend of the jackalope, upon which the Wyoming taxidermists were building, may be related to similar stories in other cultures and other historical times. Researchers suggest that at least some of the tales of horned hares were inspired by sightings of rabbits infected with the Shope papilloma virus. It causes horn- and antler-like tumors to grow in various places on a rabbit's head and body.

Folklorists see the jackalope as one of a group of fabled creatures common to American culture since Colonial days. These appear in tall tales about hodags, giant turtles, Bigfoot, and many other mysterious beasts and in novels like Moby-Dick. The tales lend themselves to comic hoaxing by entrepreneurs who seek attention for their products, their persons, or their towns.

John Hancock (ornithologist)

John Hancock (24 February 1808 – 11 October 1890) was a British naturalist, ornithologist, taxidermist and landscape architect. He is considered the father of modern taxidermy. He introduced the style of dramatic preparation in taxidermy. One of his famous works "Struggle with the quarry" depicted a falcon attacking a heron which held an eel. This taxidermy mount was an attraction at the 1851 Great Exhibition at the Crystal Palace in London.

Hancock was born in Newcastle upon Tyne and educated at The Royal Grammar School. He was a brother of the naturalist Albany Hancock. The brothers lived with their sister, Mary Jane, at 4 St. Mary’s Terrace, Newcastle, now part of a listed terrace at 14–20 Great North Road. His father was also a John Hancock and he ran a saddle and hardware business. He may have trained in taxidermy under Richard Wingate, a neighbour of Thomas Bewick. Hancock was a mentor and tutor to the celebrated ornithologist and bird painter, Allan Brooks. Hancock was also an artist and produced several lithographic prints in the 1850s depicting his taxidermy preparations. He was also interested in falconry and was especially a fan of the gyrfalcon. Hancock travelled with fellow naturalist William C. Hewitson to Switzerland in 1845.In 1874, Hancock published his Catalogue of the Birds of Northumberland and Durham.

Hancock edited Thomas Bewick's 1847 edition of Birds. In 1868 he planned a layout for Newcastle Town Moor, which was only partly realised. In 1875, he was asked to prepare a plan for Saltwell Park, but declined due to pressure of work.

The Hancock Museum in Newcastle upon Tyne is named after the Hancock brothers, both of whom took an instrumental part in getting the museum built. Hancock also prepared flat skins for the collection and received specimens from as far as India through correspondents like Edward Blyth. The museum contains many specimens from their collections. Hancock's collection includes a specimen of the red-necked nightjar Caprimulgus ruficollis claimed to be the first one from Britain and continues to stand as a unique record. Suspicions of an error in the records or even of wilful fraud have been dismissed as Hancock was careful in recording collection information. In some specimens such as an alpine swift without location information, he even noted the fact that it was missing accurate location information. Hancock was also the first to record the breeding of the black redstart in 1845.

Martha Maxwell

Martha Ann Maxwell (née Dartt 21 July 1831 – 31 May 1881) was an American naturalist, artist and taxidermist. She helped found modern taxidermy. Maxwell's pioneering diorama displays are said to have influenced major figures in taxidermy history who entered the field later, such as William Temple Hornaday and Carl Akeley (the father of modern taxidermy). She was born in Pennsylvania in 1831. Among her many accomplishments, she is credited with being the first woman field naturalist to obtain and prepare her own specimens.

Mounted in Alaska

Mounted in Alaska was a reality television series that airs on the History Channel. The series follows the creative works of Knight's Taxidermy, Inc. located Anchorage, Alaska; which is owned and operated by Russell Knight. The team focuses on hunting and fishing clientele, sometimes making mounts inside the client's homes. The team also specialize in taxidermy restoration and repair.

Sharon Needles

Sharon Needles (born November 28, 1981), is the stage name of Aaron Coady, an American drag performer and recording artist. A self-described "stupid genius, reviled sweetheart, and PBR princess", Needles rose to prominence on the fourth season of the Logo reality competition series RuPaul's Drag Race, where she quickly became a fan favorite and was subsequently crowned "America's Next Drag Superstar" in April 2012. After winning RuPaul's Drag Race, her debut album PG-13 was released on January 26, 2013. The album debuted at number 186 on the Billboard 200 and number 9 on Dance/Electronic Albums. Since, Needles has released the US Dance/Electronic chart top-ten albums Taxidermy (2015) and Battle Axe. (2017)

Her official YouTube channel has accumulated over 9 million views as of April 8, 2019, with 2 of her videos surpassing 1 million views on YouTube.


The skvader (pronounced [ˈskvɑːdɛr]) is a Swedish fictional creature that was constructed in 1918 by the taxidermist Rudolf Granberg and is permanently displayed at the museum at Norra Berget in Sundsvall. It has the forequarters and hindlegs of a European hare (Lepus europaeus), and the back, wings and tail of a female wood grouse (Tetrao urogallus). It was later jokingly given the Latin name Tetrao lepus pseudo-hybridus rarissimus L.


Stuff, stuffed, and stuffing may refer to:

Physical matter

An animal preserved by means of taxidermy

Taxidermy (Queenadreena album)

Taxidermy is the debut album of English alternative rock band Queenadreena, released in 2000. The enhanced-CD release includes a short film by Martina Hoogland-Ivanow involving time-lapse photography and dream-like visuals.

The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living

The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living is an artwork created in 1991 by Damien Hirst, an English artist and a leading member of the "Young British Artists" (or YBA). It consists of a tiger shark preserved in formaldehyde in a vitrine. It was originally commissioned in 1991 by Charles Saatchi, who sold it in 2004, to Steven A. Cohen for an undisclosed amount, widely reported to have been at least $8 million. However, the title of Don Thompson's book, The $12 Million Stuffed Shark: The Curious Economics of Contemporary Art, suggests a higher figure.

Owing to deterioration of the original 14-foot (4.3 m) tiger shark, it was replaced with a new specimen in 2006. It was on loan to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City from 2007 to 2010.It is considered the iconic work of British art in the 1990s, and has become a symbol of Britart worldwide.

White Lies (band)

White Lies are an English post-punk band from Ealing, London. Formerly known as Fear of Flying, the core band members are Harry McVeigh (lead vocals, guitar), Charles Cave (bass guitar and backing vocals), and Jack Lawrence-Brown (drums). The band performs live as a five-piece, when sidemen Tommy Bowen and Rob Lee join the

line up. White Lies' musical style has been described as dark yet uplifting by the media, drawing comparisons to Editors, Interpol, Joy Division, and The Killers.

White Lies formed in October 2007, after writing songs that they felt didn't suit their original band. After delaying their first performance for five months to build up media hype, they earned a recording contract with Fiction Records days after their debut. The release of singles "Unfinished Business" and "Death" led to tours and festival appearances in the United Kingdom and North America, including a headline performance at BBC Radio 1's Big Weekend and a place on the 2009 NME Awards Tour. At the beginning of 2009, White Lies featured in multiple "ones to watch" polls for the coming year, including the BBC's Sound of 2009 poll and the BRITs Critics' Choice Award.

White Lies' debut album To Lose My Life..., released in January 2009, hit number one on the UK Albums Chart. Their second album Ritual was recorded in 2010, and released on 17 January 2011. Big TV, their third studio album, was released on 12 August 2013, whilst their fourth, titled Friends, was released 7 October 2016. Their latest album Five was released on 1 February 2019.

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