How long for frozen hide?

1_pointer

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I have had a javelina hide, head/hooves still on, in the freezer for a bit over a year. How long are hides generally good for in a freezer before you get them mounted?
 

dcopas78

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My dad has been a taxidermist for over 45 years and I asked him about it. He said that if the head is just in the freezer, unwrapped with the ears, nose, eyes exposed, it has probably suffered some damage and may not be good. If it is wrapped up good and tight, it will probably be OK. He has had deer hides, caped and wrapped in newspaper with a plastic bag over it, and with the face wrapped to the innermost area last for 2-3 years. Hopefully it turns out good. Javelina make an awesome mount.
 

1_pointer

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Thanks for the answer. It's wrapped and taped, but not sure if I'd call it "good and tight". I was considering putting it off, so as to put the money towards something else for the time being. Looks like I won't do that.
 

Booshway

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There are a few things to consider when freezing a hide. First, like the other response, good heavy plastic bags are important to keep them from freezer burning. Second, the freezer is just slowing down the bacteria, but it is still there. It is best to keep the hair outside, rather than inside out. The hair acts as an barrier keeping moisture from escaping. I've found that a good double layered heavy black colored garbage bag rapped tightly around a hair-out hide, can last up to two years. Fleshing, salting and pickling them first will prolong freezer time. The less blood you have with your hide the better. Blood spots are difficult to tan because of the bacteria decaying the hide (skin.) The first areas to go bad are the ears and face, thinner skinned areas. Hope this helps.
 
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1_pointer

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Thanks for the tips! Hopefully I'll need to employ them on a new hide after this fall.
 

Gellar

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I work in Environmental Education and I often have animals in my freezer for a year before I get them to the taxidermist due to budget or paperwork that needs to be done with the USFWS. The longest I have had one in my freezer was a bird of prey that took three years to get the paperwork in order. It turned out to be a spectacular mount! We usually double wrap the hide or carcass in contractor bags and than wrap duct tape or gorilla tape around the bag to keep it tight.
 

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