How long should a duck mount last? - Graybeard Outdoors
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-11-2017, 09:33 PM Thread Starter
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Default How long should a duck mount last?

Less than 7 years? Many of my ducks mounts, 1-, 3-, 5-, and 7-years old, are shedding ALL of their feathers and coming apart. Some are irretrievable they have lost so much.

Necks have separated from bodies. Rear ends have separated from molds as well as the rest of the underlying skin. There appears to have been no deterioration arresting chemicals used.

One mount, a twin set of Florida Black Ducks in full departure flight, "blew apart" when it was taken from the house to the truck. Most of the upper mount's feathers flew away into the yard including neck, flight, back, tail, chest, down, and you name it feathers. That was quite unexpected.

Previously, a Blue Winged Teal was destroyed when a House Wren came indoors and tried to use one of its wings as a perch. the wing broke off when the Wren alighted on it.

How is all of this prevented? They were not cheap.

Last edited by land_owner; 03-11-2017 at 09:36 PM.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-11-2017, 09:43 PM
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I have seen mounted birds that were older than I am. Friends of my parents had a couple of Owls that were in the family for years as they can not be bought or sold.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-11-2017, 11:26 PM
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I'll be 72 this month. The Anniston Museum of Natural History has a HUGE bird collection even to include some that have been extinct a long time. The collection is older than me and still on display tho I don't think they have room to display the full collection at one time now as they did at the original museum down town. It is called the Regar-Werner Ornithology Collection. This is from their website:


"Many of the birds are mounted in natural habitat groupings with painted background dioramas. More than 400 species are represented.

The collection dates from 1860 to the early 1900s making it one of the oldest diorama collections in the United States. Extinct and endangered species, including a passenger pigeon and ivory-billed woodpecker are a focal point of this exhibit."

I think if properly mounted and stored there is no practical limit to how long they should last.



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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2017, 12:07 AM
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I have two duck mounts that are supposed to be from the Matlock TV show. They were in a book shelf on the show. That show ended 25 years ago. The mounts are in fine shape. I believe the Matlock origin as I live in NC near what passes for Mayberry. How could that be wrong.

Not to hijack the thread, but I bought a magnificent mounted whitetail deer head, 10 points, from a garage sale ($20!!!) while my wife was visiting her brother in California. I hung it in the computer room, right over the computer. She was home about a week, typing on the computer, looked up and said to me "Did we always have that moose head up there?". The laugh alone was worth the $20. I do believe that the deer mount was the last remains of somebody's ex-husband.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2017, 05:53 AM Thread Starter
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Wow. Palm to forehead. You are right. Decades - of course. Centuries - perhaps.

Could components of the preservative have been expired or bad? Should I contact the taxidermist after this long? How should I approach that contact? I know that sugar draws more flies than vinegar.

Or am I just facing a rip-off?
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-13-2017, 07:32 AM
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It is hard to say with out seeing the ducks?
Are the skins oily? Do you have a moth problem there ?
So much can happen to animal mounts if not preserved with the proper chemicals? Too many fellows take too many short cuts in their work to speed up their pay days !

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-13-2017, 02:26 PM Thread Starter
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Moths...that's a thought. Some worm/bug infestation against the skin seems feasible. I will take some pictures and post them up for review and comment. May take another day or two. Standby...
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-13-2017, 03:39 PM
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Did one person do all of the mounts? I would be less likely to suspect multiple artists.

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 06:06 PM Thread Starter
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All by the same person.
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Last edited by land_owner; 03-16-2017 at 06:13 PM.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 06:08 PM Thread Starter
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More of the same...different mount.
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Last edited by land_owner; 03-16-2017 at 06:15 PM.
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