Taxidermists are busy this time of year. Hunters seek them out to preserve their precisous memories. Often, this becomes more of an adventure than the hunt.

I’ve had bad experiences with taxidermists all over the world. They have you at a disadvantage; you give them your memory and your money and hope for the best. Take plenty of photos of you and your trophy, you may never see it again.

A Texas taxidermist kept an axis deer I shot for three years. Finally, while visiting is hometown I called from a local pay phone and he actually answered. Told him I was on my way to his shop but he said he shipped it out that morning. My wife confirmed the arrival of the antlers four days later so I decided not to pay him a visit.

An African taxidermist broke my eland skull in half and another Texas taxidermist has had my bobcat hide for five years. A local taxidermist here in WV did a good job on mounts but treated my referrals like he did not have time for them. Another local taxidermist tried to charge me twice for my mount. One even screwed the deer’s ear to its antler!

I bring this up for two reasons. First to advise you to only use a taxidermist that has a proven track record with folks you know and trust. Second, to tell you about a positive taxidermist experience I recently had.

Last year on Thanksgiving I took my first WV bear with a rifle. It was a big deal to me; I’d been trying to do that at our hunting camp in Hampshire County, WV my entire life. I took the advice of some locals and called up a young man named Timothy Veach at Veach’s Second Nature Taxidermy. I drove out to his home and left him my trophy.

Tim worked with me to set up the mount exactly as I wanted and delivered it at the price he quoted a day early. Working with Tim was without a doubt the best taxidermist experience I have had. So, when I my son took his seven point this year, guess where it went.

Bat's Buck

If you hunt in Northern Virginia or the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia, stop by and visit with Tim. He is one taxidermist I can vouch for.


About gunwriter

Born and raised in the West Virginia hills, Richard literally grew up in the woods. He has chased coon hounds until daylight, waited out whitetails perched high in an oak, canoed the New River and hunted from the Montana Mountains to the Green Hills of Africa. During service in the Army and later as a municipal police officer and Special Agent with the railroad police, Richard obtained numerous certifications in small arms instruction. He has trained military personnel, law enforcement officers and civilians in the application of firearms for defensive, competitive and recreational use. Richard won the West Virginia Governor’s Twenty Award for law enforcement, the West Virginia National Guard State Pistol Competition and earned his Distinguished Medal with pistol. Badge turned in, Richard is now a contributing editor for several magazines. He was the compiling author of the book, Rifle Bullets for the Hunter and conceptualized and contributed to Selecting and Ordering a Custom Hunting Rifle. Richard also contributed a chapter to the John Velke book, The True Story of the Baldwin-Felts Detective Agency. Richard has patents on a riflescope reticle and a revolutionary bullet testing media. A hillbilly at heart, Richard lives on Shadowland - his shooting range in West Virginia - with the most understanding wife in the world, their three kids and a very protective ridgeback hound.
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One Response to TAXIDERMISTS

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