Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Taxidermy gone horribly wrong

This is a cheap sort of post, but I'll do it anyway. There are thousands of these pictures on the net, on hundreds of sites, and most of them are now examples of people TRYING to botch taxidermy and make it look funny. My personal favorites are motheaten, threadbare, cheaply-made-with-corners-cut, and perhaps sincere attempts to represent the spirit of the flyblown dead carcass of something.

Not everyone knows how to match the teeth to the animal. Maybe a set of human dentures was cheaper to find than actual polar bear teeth. Break out the Polident.

An awful lot of these, the ones I favor I mean, depict cats of various sorts, domestic or wild. I don't know what this one is. It's someone's idea of what a cat's face looks like. The measuring tape is a mystery to me.

I don't know exactly what it is about this one, but it creeps the bejeezus out of me. Some taxidermists, at least in the bad old days, liked to anthro - anthropo- anthropomorph- oh hell, they liked to give human traits to animals, so maybe that's what's going on here. Reminds me of Snagglepuss, or Snaggletooth, or whatever his name was. A definite Hanna-Barbera look.

Wrong size eyes.

Some of these, due to faulty or non-existent technique, perhaps from following a You, Too Can Be a Taxidermist! ad in the back of a comic book from 1940, may have shrunk with time, or with being shoved in the back of some nightmare closet to get it the hell away from you. A nice gift from Uncle Edgar who has a nice little hobby on the side, so he'll keep his hands to himself. My, how lifelike!

Meow, meow, meow.

I don't often favor the "deliberately cute" school of taxidermy, but there's something about this one. I think it's the zipper, combined with the Burt Lancaster facial expression.

This is a member of the Royal Family who stuck its paw in a lightsocket and became electrified. Obviously it used to be a corgi. Too bad we had to put it down, its eyes were too close together.

A good example of a "What-Is-It".


What scares me so much is that I think this guy really tried. Maybe it was even his dog. The fact you can see through its ear creeps me out even more. (Note the nose, or rather the absence of one.)

We can't possibly include them all, but this is a classic not to be missed. Either the donkey was in a bad way and had to run around on its hind legs, or the taxidermist lost the front legs, or lost interest, or else he just ran out of embalming fluid.

This isn't a replica of the subject of that great children's story, Misty of Chincoteague. This IS Misty of Chincoteague. I think I'm going to be sick.

For reasons unknown, this is my favorite. The tubular head, seamlike mouth and drainpipe neck are iconic, as is the stuffing pouring out of its nostrils.

Never was this a moose. Ever.

Dear Sir or Madam, will you read my book
         It took me years to write, will you take a look. . .

Babycakes (a photo essay)

Dear Sir or Madam, will you read my book
         It took me years to write, will you take a look. . .