World Taxidermy Championships

Springfield, Illinois

Tagnuts... a taxidermists worst enemy

… Whilst searching through my archive to find pictures for the new portfolio section on this site I came across a fascinating story I shot 5 years ago whilst visiting the World Taxidermy Championships in America with a British film crew.  Needless to say, the whole thing has totally engrossed me again for the second time around, and so here I present to you a selection of pictures from that weekend for your enjoyment.

Open wide and say ahhh... judges mark animals higher the more realistic their expressions are.

John David Ellzey, legendary author of 'Skinning & Mounting a Squirrel' and 'Squirrels. Skins & Mounts'.

Sculpting a clay 'mount'.

Judging the small mammals section.

'Let us freeze dry your pets'.

Ken Walker

Infamous serial ‘Best in World’ winner, Canadian Ken Walker stands with his extinct prehistoric Irish elk which was created using anatomical books and the skins of 3 modern day cousins of this beast.  Ken shocked the judges in 2003 by producing a Giant Panda at the world show, one of the most loved and endangered species on the planet. As it turned out however, no cuddly pandas had died for his art… just two ‘normal’ bears, one of which had had its fur bleached to create the giant wonder.

Jaw Juice. Personally, I never leave home without mine.

Putting a Kangeroo on show

Jeanette Hall

Jeanette Hall, from Spring Creek, Arizona stands with her pedestall-mounted Appaloosa horse which gained 3rd Place in the professional category. You can read more about this picture HERE.

Arriving at the show

A stall holder in the exhibition hall

A judge's score card

Now that's what I call a portrait

Don't just stand there gawping. Help me stand this bloody thing up again!


I don't know what they're selling, but I definitely ain't buying it

How I felt about the show

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4 Responses to “World Taxidermy Championships”

  1. william says:

    You guys are creepy!

  2. Dave Daniels says:

    You had me hooked with the first photo!

  3. Lisa says:

    This is one of the most bizarre things I have seen in a while haha

  4. Nick Riley says:

    Ha ha – brilliant!

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