Capp's Taxidermy Studio

African,north,south American wildlife taxidermy art and sculptures

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Hunting Advisers

Here at Capp’s Taxidermy Studio  we advise our clients  on the do’s and don’ts of  The hunting world.

That could be some advice when you’re shooting, what to shoot, skinning, trophy evaluation, where and where not to go for a certain trophy, international hunting  and who to book with. We know some amazing hunting consultants that are very professional and will help you every step of the way. It could be a hunting consultant for Hunting wtdeer or  for hunting hogs or water buffalo in Australia or going on your first safari in Africa.

These hunting consultants that I recommend only do a certain  tupes of hunt for example one will be just for North America one will be just for Russia one will be just for Africa.

I do not get a commission or anything by recommending these hunting consultants. This cost nothing to you to book with a professional hunting consultant, the outfitter pays them a commission not you so I would highly recommend taking my advice and only  book  with these types of individuals. I only recommend services that have and will utilize my Taxidermy services  and or that I have personally worked with.

The world is full of outfitters some very good some are very shaky and wouldn’t touch with a 10 foot pole  and you really don’t know which ones to and trust with.

It’s like some outfits in Africa  hunters have gone over there and hunted with them before and they think they are now friends with the pH, don’t get me wrong some do you become friends but most of them say anything while you’re there to have them utilize whatever they say to do with your money . For example this pH tells you to bring all your friends over there next time but if you search around you will find out that his quality of animals is not very good and the pricing is not very good but  he is your friend and you don’t question it. Always remember to think outside the box  and don’t listen to fake news/propaganda . Then when it comes to the pack and dip they recommend only people/firms that are going to pay him a commission and then that taxidermy shop only uses a certain shipper that pays the taxidermist a commission and the shipper only recommends you going through a custom broker that pays him commission so everybody’s trying to get money here.

You need a neutral  advisor in your corner that receives no commissions from anybody. I will tell you the real story why and how and where to use this knowledge .  If you are or  going to be come a client of mine my services are free, so you can’t go wrong.

My clients that are going international will receive my international hunting pack which includes tons of information, laminated shipping tags so you know who’s is who’s and they also have all the information anybody will need to ship their trophies home . Just for an example if you book your taxidermy services with me I will tell you which pack and dip in  Africa to use. I will tell you to include me into your emails so all of my 40 years experience on doing African trophies  can be applied to your advantage. I will tell you which shippers to used to get your trophies into the states, I will tell you where and who to use as a trophy custom broker.

Or if you’re just hunting North America going for Alaskan brown bear, BC moose or just lucky enough to draw a sheep goat or moose or any tag in the lower 48 . I give you advice on the skinning and if any questions you can call or FaceTime the Studio and  all trophies can be shipped to me with little or no Problems

Capp’s Taxidermy Studio is NOT  your local shop. The shop may be in Montana but I have done amazing Wildlife artistry from animals all over the world.

 Capp’s taxidermy studio is one of the best studios in North America , your best choice for a global wildlife artistry


works of art

Some examples of amazing work by Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC

All work completed by global wildlife artist Don C

Contact us at the web site for more info….

IMG_6476 IMG_5638 IMG_5629 IMG_6407


IMG_6615100_0533IMG_0227Some of Africa’s dangerous 7

lion, leopard, hippo, buffalo, crocodile , elephant and rhino

All are works of art at Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC . All work done by Don, global wildlife taxidermy artist



There you are, on an international hunting adventure, sitting around after the hunt sipping a nice cold beer and your PH ask you ‘’ where are you going to have your hunting trophies mounted at mate’’ and you may respond “ I’m going to have Billy Bob do them down the street where I live, he does a killer squirrel’’. The PH then says “ Well that’s all fine and good but I know a super guy that just does a fabulous job and it’s best that you have a native African do the work just for the reason that he see these critters all the time. He will come here and grab them , mount them right up within 5 months and then ship them to you in the USA and he is a lot cheaper that any US taxidermist and I highly recommend him.’’

Over the time of the hunt you became friends with the PH and you trust his option and now you don’t want to disappoint him so you agree to do as he stated.

Congratulations , you have now been hustled . !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Let me now tell you what had happen. The primary reason that your PH recommend this joker is because he get a kick back-commission from him. Its not that he wants to hose you because he has some influence on your decisions, its just his main motivation is MONEY. Everyone is looking for a way to generate more income.

Commissions are increasing throughout the world as some taxidermist attempt to stay busy by buying work. It avoids having to go to conventions, buying ads or even building a solid reputation. In some cases, these taxidermist are good people and do a nice job, but most cases they are not and good luck getting your trophies back. Do your homework before saying yep.

My little pet peeve is that the client comes to you stating that they are going hunting and are in need of shipping tags, etc.. and when they are done with the hunt, they get con to all above and don’t have the nerve to contact you when they get back to state it. But here at Capp’s Taxidermy Studio I will contact them with a certain amount of time and if they don’t respond, I will send them a invoice for services rendered . Its only far that you pay for my time, material and shipping them to you, right..

Here at Capp’s, we do not pay commissions for taxidermy work, if a PH, hunting agent, outfitter or whoever they are doing it because they believe in my artistry.

The main reason I’m writing this is to have the client do the following. You should support your home country , spend money where you make your money. Support Americans !!

Last is to do your homework, check out the taxidermist-there and or here and just because you may live in say Texas that does not mean you have to use a taxidermist in that state . About 80% of Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC clients are out of the state of Montana and some outside the country of the USA, for the reasons of GREAT discounts on shipping, professionalism, experience and a great sense of artistry.

In other words, open your mind and your world, think outside of the box and try one of the country’s best studio.

Have amazing time


Choosing the right taxidermist

You have waited a lifetime to finally draw that tag of a lifetime and now it must go to a taxidermist to preserve it forever but where do I go, the guy on the corner that does taxidermy of the side-they say he is pretty good and cheap or do I look in the phone book, haha I couldn’t help myself on that one , or do I look on line and go from there

1st off lets go over some opinions

One should never bring the said trophy to anyone that does it part time and have a day job to pay the bills. If he isn’t committed to becoming a full time taxidermist and they are not the ones to trust with a special trophy. I don’t care if he is your neighbor or your friend or even family , there is a line to cross from its ok work to holy sh*t that good work. Always bring it to a professional studio, walk into the studio or go online to a studio and really look around in the showroom and the work area so you can see if its a clean and professional environment or is it a pig sty . If online, call them and have them facetime you so you can see it 1st hand, very simple to do.

2nd is NEVER make your decision on price. You cannot believe how many calls I get concerning the price of a animal or if I bring in more than one do I get a deal on price-my answer is hell no, that right there tells me you are very conservative and will be very demanding no matter what I do . Some people are closed minded and only think of the bottom line, some are worried on what their significant other is going to say when they finds out what you paid for that dead thing on the wall and if that is a concern than you have a whole hell of a lot of things wrong and this isn’t one of them.  Price should always be looked at last. What you are buying is the talent of the artist-taxidermist. Your not buying a car or appliance . Not all taxidermist are created equally. For the smart guy that always wants a deal, remember that you get what you pay for. If I give a deal and that a huge if I’m always going to skimp on something and the guy that is paying full rate , I’m going all out for them.

3rd is time frame. If the taxidermist is any good than he is in demand and is backlogged, simple as that,  we can only do so much unless we want it to look like the work the guy does in his garage. Any good studio does the work in 8 to 12 months turn around time, if you had the only piece in the studio being worked on than yes ,you would get it sooner but that is not the way it is. Please do not be the one that is constantly calling/texting and saying ”is it done yet”, I cannot tell you how annoying that is and if you do it enough I will put off doing your piece longer just to spite you so please don’t be that person, I only want to remember the piece of art I do for you, not the ass****of a person you were.


Next you have to do your homework and see how long he is in business as a full time guy, what type of mounts do they do, do they mount their work there or do they sub-contract out the work.  Ask for references for the type you want done, do they ship. do they home tan”-you are going to do what with my cape”- or do they ship to a professional tannery and which one do they use–I only use the best in the country , not just the one in the state, you are only limited to what you have been told to do-never go status quo !!!!

With the internet now you do not have to use the guy in the same town, you can send it to a great taxidermist in another state. If  the animal needs to be skinned-one should of done this on the mountain but if not then skin it, it not brain surgery , if you cut a hole than you cut a hole and it can be repaired. Go on line or get a app and they will tell you what to do. Then freeze it-don’t salt it cuz salt doesn’t freeze. Put it in a box and ship next to 2nd day air it them.

Here at Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC is received about 75% of my work from outside the state , mainly off my web sites, why you may ask and it pretty simple answer and that is I’m dam good, very professional and an always working for the client from major freight discounts to emailing or texting them updated pic’s of the work-before I start to the final piece, working with you on all the international orders that you have problems with and yes there are always hiccups  and for a good rate that compares to other full time professionals.  A  USDA approved establishment , 38 yrs experience and I have mounted many times over the game animals of the world.

Great taxidermy is best viewed at 6 to 8 ft away. If want to shove a flashlight up his nose or in his ear or anywhere else than do it but no one cares about that, we really dont. Its all about the overall appearance , the hair, muscle detail, attitude , etc

So open your mind and explore. Shop around by looking at the work and not the dam prices. Talk to them and that  right there is where you can tell if they are phony or true.

If you want to use one of the  great  taxidermy studio’s than contact Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC and see what we can do for you.



Degreasing the African skins

There it is, a trophy Serval cat, you take aim with a solid bullet- so you do not blow a huge hole in it and boom, it’s down. Hands are shaken, high fives, etc.    Back to the truck with the quarry and head back to camp . Once in camp the skinner is in charge of the day’s harvest. He starts to skin your trophy out and after a 1/2 hour he is done with his chore and the skin is now headed to the salt—flash to the future when the taxidermist is informing you that the tannery called him today to inform you that the Serval cat in your order has been rejected cuz of the grease was not taken out of the hide BEFORE salting . The hide with a grease problem usually falls apart like a wet tissue-totally unrepairable !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have had to tell some clients that their small African cats and some non-game trophies were lost to not treating the skin properly in the field and or back at camp.

Here at Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC we tell the clients how to treat certain types of animals before they leave for the hunt but once they have taken the animal they listen to the PH when they say-oh the skinners know how to take care of the trophy-Bullshit, They know nothing but to salt it, they are not tanners or taxidermist, they are skinners and trackers and they don’t care either so take charge cuz once its rejected, you paid that trophy fee for just a photo, nothing else

So if you want to be looking at your trophy, listen to Capp’s Taxidermy Studio and not to anyone else.

All small and large African cats, porcupines, hares, and some other game ( some  north American bears also should be prepped with cornmeal too) must be skinned and then rub good old cornmeal on the hide and rub it again and again  and then leave it in the pile of cornmeal for a hour and then replace the cornmeal and do it all over again and only then rub and salt into the skin.

Without the cornmeal the hide has a survival rate of 20%, and that sucks when you think of the time and money you are betting on

The best advice ever, listen to the one that knows what the hell they are talking about, the ones that day in and day out handle, Capp’s Taxidermy Studio llc and not the ones that think they know everything but have never touch on in the real world.

It’s your money, your trophy, your memoirs so take charge and demand that the trophies be prepared the right way and not the normal way, you will not be sorry.



Before and After the trip

The best thing to do is after you have checked out your adventure and put the money down is to contact Capp’s Taxidermy Studio llc to discuss the trip, especially if its to Africa.

Capp’s will prepare a international hunting packet for you and if any others that are going to join you. The packet includes shipping tags for the trophies you are going to take that will have all info to get your trophies into the country , POA papers for the custom brokers, travel tips, hunting/gun tips and info on dip and pack businesses versus the taxidermist for pack and dip.

Contact your hunting outfitter and find out where the PH is using for a dip and pack and ask for their email, contact them and ask for a rate list for dip and pack and also references for the pack and dip. Contact the references to ask how long and the cost for the dip and pack . Compare their rates with the pack and dip businesses I have provided and now it’s your time to decide on who to use.

If you use the one a recommend , contact them and see if and when they can pickup your trophies. South Africa is very large and the pack and dip businesses only can service some much of the country.

Always have the trophies picked up at the camp, never have the trophies brought to the taxidermy shop for pickup for the main reason the PH will get a commission from the taxidermy shop (look at the previos article on this blog) and then will charge you a fee for storage and once added up with all the pack and dip charges, you will not save any money .

Once you have returned home from the trip, contact Capp’s Taxidermy Studio llc to discuss the trophy list, travel, etc.

Then fill out the POA papers and send them off to the custom brokers

Place Capp’s in your emails to brokers and to Africa so if there is any questions or problems, Capp’s will be able to help you

Once you have wired your money to the dip and pack business, it will take 4 months to have your trophies ready to be handed over to the shippers and once angain you will receive a notice that you can pay them by wired money or on some, you can ship them over by COD on your credit card on file at the brokers

Once cleared, the crates will be shipped to Capp’s Taxidermy Studio llc and will be cleared at the studio because Capp’s is a USDA approved establishment.

You will then be invoiced for a down payment of 35% to 50% of total taxidermy rates. Once received the skins will be sent to a tannery that specially is international game animals.

After the items are received back from the tannery, you will be contacted for instruction on how you would like your trophies done. The forms will be altered and the horns-if any-will be placed on them, photo’s will be taken and sent to you for your approval . Nothing will be mounted  without the clients approval. Photo’s will be taken during the process to keep the client informed.

Once completed and paid for the trophies will be placed into wooden crates and shipped to the client with Capp’s MAJOR discounted freight discounts.

Capp’s is  a very professional studio. I’m involved in every part of the safari from start to finish so my clients don’t have to worry about certain items.

Use my studio once, you will be a client forever…



Where Are My Trophies

At Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC I hear that statement a lot when it comes to clients that are waiting for international hunting trophies to be shipped into the USA. There are a few reasons why your trophies are taking 6 to 16 months to be shipped into the country. 1) Your trophies went to a taxidermist that your PH uses for the reasons that they receive commission from them and being a taxidermist, they hold on to them for a while until they have to pay the commission  and while they are there, they will hope that the client will just say “go ahead and mount them since they are already there”. Your safari represents a major revenue source for them but only if they do the taxidermy work instead of just pac and dip process. When they are not doing the work, there is little income so they are not in any hurry to process and ship your trophies . When you drop them of personally , they always say that they will be out within 60 days but after your home for 6 months, you contact them and  when asked about the trophies, they blame it on the permits, CITIES,or TOPS  have not yet been completed, but in fact, they have not yet applied for them. They  are only going to apply for the permits when you wire them the money for the pack and dip.   Major conflict of interest.!!!!!!  2)Your PH , on some operators, are not paying the trophy fees to the government on time so they are using your trophy fees to stay above water, wanting for the next clients trophy fees to pay for yours and so on. But when asked about the subject, they are quick to say that’s its the governments fault. 3) And then once here in the USA, it’s the new employees at the USFG that with the smallest errors with the paperwork from the country of origin, your trophy will be confiscated or sent back and then have to be re-imported. 4) Or when the taxidermist says he only uses a certain shipper and only ships to one port is again a crock . The reason for this extortion is that the taxidermist only uses this shipper is that the shipper is paying the taxidermist a commission and he is using that to say afloat. reputable shippers will ship to any port that the client wants their trophies to go to and most will work with the client and ship the crates C.O.D. to the broker clearing the trophies that the client hired-( then there are some that they only ship to a certain custom broker too, the extortion just goes on and on) And the list goes on but here are some solutions. Book only with reputable outfitters, check at least 2 years worth of references and if there are any red flags, address them before putting down your deposit. Use only independent export co that all they do is pack and dip and most of them will guarantee  that the trophies will be shipped out within 90 days max. They do pickup from your PH so he doesn’t have to deliver them.  It’s your money, for the taxidermist and the pack and dip firms are in the same ballpark for rates. Where the pac and dip firms want to export the trophies and get paid, not the taxidermy firm that just wants to mount them. Make sure when you receive the email stating the contains of the safari that EVERYTHING that you want shipped is on that list. If not respond right away and tell them about it and tell them to find your trophy cuz if it’s not on the list, it will not be shipped and it’s gone Have the exporter scan the paperwork over to the custom brokers before the crate is shipped so they can proof read it and if any clerical errors, they will be corrected and that means no problem with customs plus you will have copies if the main ones are lost on the trip to the brokers and to your USDA agent like Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC. Most of this must be discussed with the outfitter during the booking and before the money leaves your hand cuz once you board the plane back to the USA it becomes a lot harder to handle, but if they are reputable outfitters, there is a few things that can be done if push comes to shove, but that’s for another article. Any questions, feel free to contact Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC for we are a USDA approved establishment and we clear lots of international orders every year and we can answer most questions. Remember it’s your money, your choice, and life is way too short to worry about this.  


Darted White Rhino  created by Wildlife Taxidermist Artist At  Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC

Pedestal Mount




Capp’s Taxidermy Studio LLC would  like to post what you are going to pay for a guided hunt here in America or any international hunt.

First you have the cost of the hunt, the travel , the hotels or B&B , Tags , etc that you would be aware of

Tips. The going rate for tipping your North America guide is 150.00 per critter and 150.00 to camp help-cook,etc.. For international hunt the going rate is as follows. PH is 500.00 to 1000.00 depending on the type of game hunted and if they worked hard for you. Camp help-cook, cabin help is usually 300.00 max. Skinner/tracker is usually 150.00 to 200.00- if you are going to be cheap, here is not the place IF you want your trophies back in good condition. I will usually tip the skinner the amount above plus I will go buy a skinning knife/sharpen steel here at home and then give them to the skinner along with the cash. The type of knives they work with are dull and large and are worthless in the skinning shack. Plus I always bring small bite size candy like suckers for the help to enjoy cuz they don’t have any and they love them.

Next is to have 50.00 or more in cash , in  5.00 bills to tip the drivers, the police handling your guns, airline personal, to anyone helping you out

So when you harvest a trophy, its skinned and salted or skull cleaned up so if your in Africa they will then go to the taxidermist to be dipped and packed- always bring your trophy back to the USA and support our ecomey .  They will send you a pack list first, read it over and make sure everything you have shot is on the list. example is horns, cape or full skin, skull or skull, full skin. If there is anything missing you must contact them now and point out the problem before you paid their wage. If everything is good to go , they would of sent the banking info to you and you now must go to your bank and wire them the amount due for the pack and dip.  Make sure you read over the bank wire before your bank sends off your money, most of them have never done this before and are clueless too.  Most taxidermist charge from 90.00 to 150.00 per critter plus the permit fees for shipping.

Next after you have paid off the taxidermist over there, they will then hand off your shipment to a freight co in about 3 to 6 months , who will then apply for your export permit and find room on a airline to ship the crate. Most shippers will ship your crate C.O.D. to your customs brokers like Coppersmith but you must make arrangements before hand to do this. Freight  is 800.00 to 2000.00 depending on the weight and size of the crate–elephant is a lot more to sip than a zebra.

If any CITES permits are needed for the game hunted-leopard, elephant, etc. then you must apply for one at the USFG for the sum of 100.00 and are only good for one year

Custom brokers like Coppersmith, is who my studio uses, will charge you a flat rate of 300.00 to clear your shipment. Then they will ship the crate by freight to Capps Taxidermy Studio which will cost somewhere between 70.00 to 400.00 depending on weight.

If any swine or primates or shipments from south Africa or Asia, they must be cleared by USDA and Capp’s Taxidermy Studio is an approved stop for that and the flat file fee is 45.00 min to 300.00, depending on what has to be done to the shipment to make it safe.

Then the final cost is to the US taxidermist for the mounting and shipping the trophies  back to you and you should be aware of all those cost before hand