Early season geese & ducks

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Early season geese & ducks

Postby BSUTravis » Thu Aug 31, 2006 7:31 pm

How is the plummage on early season waterfowl??? Are they still worth attempting to mount from a taxidermy standpoint or am I better off waiting till the cooler weather hits for their feathers to mature????

Early goose begins tomorrow here in Indiana and I was hoping to drop a few to practice on, and possibly have one turn out nice enough for the wall.
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Postby Spoony » Thu Aug 31, 2006 8:18 pm

in my opinion... with canada geese plumage dose not matter (if you are shooting white fronts, try for one that has a lot of black on his belly, as for snows a pure white bird looks best), as long as it is a trophy to you go for it... As for ducks... wait until they are in thier full plumage. Good luck!
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Postby Mr. Taxidermist » Thu Aug 31, 2006 8:39 pm

I disagree w/ spoony. Early season geese are full of pin feathers. When they start to dry, they shrink and fall out. When I mount a pin feathered bird, the shop floor ends up covered in feathers. Don't waste your time or money...wait til later in the season. The pin feathers will be mostly hardened by December.
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Postby Spoony » Thu Aug 31, 2006 10:26 pm

good piont
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Postby BSUTravis » Sat Sep 02, 2006 3:11 am

OK....thanks guys. I did drop one goose yesterday and its wing was really busted up so I didn't even consider mounting it.......but when I breasted it out I noticed all the very large and dark quills coming through the underside of it's skin......I assume those are the pin feathers.

I'll give it a few months before trying to get a good specimen to work on.

Thanks for the help!
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Postby firebird » Tue Sep 05, 2006 12:23 pm

Pinfeathers are a bird taxidermists worst enemy. On early waterfowl they will prevent you from getting your bird to really fluff up and the heads and necks will be patchy and flat. When you wash and soak birds the blood will come out of the pinfeathers and they water's surface will be covered with them. Someone mentioned what drying will do for them as well. That being said, practice makes perfect, and I have had to do several early birds that were somebodies "first" or "rare trophy" that had to be done. In these cases, I show clients the problem and then do my best. Sometimes it words alright but given the option, I wouldn't mount anything before Halloween-at least from my part of the country.
There is no help for this kind of insanity. I'm just a duck hunter, and should not be held accountable for all my actions between October 1st and freeze-up. Gordon MacQuarrie
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Postby indyhunter » Tue Sep 05, 2006 6:01 pm

Hey BSUtravis i live in carmel, indiana
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Postby BSUTravis » Sun Sep 17, 2006 7:15 am

Well we're virtually neighbors Indyhunter!

Thanks for the responses for my original early season mounting question... Now I've gone and done it, I went and shot my first goose that was banded on Friday, so I'm wanting to give it a try despite all the advice to wait. I figure I need the practice skinning it out, using my homemade wire wheel and such.......if it looks like garbage it can end up in the garbage and I'll slip the band on a late season goose.......nobody will be any the wiser.

I'll let ya'll know how I manage. I might end up with enough feathers on my garage floor to stuff a pillow or two! :)
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