Plastic bag filled with good 'ol kitty litter is all I use to dry out my raccoon tails. You could even ship them that way, I'd think.
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Viewer discretion advised, Picture from the trapline
Posted 11 November 2019 - 06:36 AM
They come to me. We feed a couple/few stray cats on our front porch. They're basically pets at this stage. We have a raccoon or two who come in and clean up the stale stuff, and we're okay with that.
Every once in a while, they start to ... accumulate. We get too many and they start fighting in the yard (making screeching noises that are very loud and obnoxious).
Then they start threatening the cats. That's when I grab the air rifle and put a few holes in a few heads. I cut the tails off and leave the rest in the back yard for the vultures. For a couple of days, we have very happy vultures in the yard. Just another bird feeder!
Barbed hooks rule!
My definition of work: Doing something in which effort exceeds gain.
Ex-Marine ... quondam fidelis
Posted 11 November 2019 - 09:21 AM
20 Mule Team Borax (some will call it sodium tetraborate) is widely accepted in trapping, fur handling, and some taxidermy as a fine drying agent and preservative. It seems to keep bugs from eating things and is also used to kill things like roaches and ants. Sold as a laundry brightener it should be in your local grocery store. next to the detergents. You can search "how to cure a rabbit foot" on the net, or "how to make a rabbit foot key chain".
I would simply skin them, remove all tissue, wash thoroughly with dish soap, and use borax to dry about them about three-five days. Any meat, fat, etc is what putrefies; the skin and hair can air dry in a week and last for years with no preservatives, In ordinary fur handling nothing but dry air is used.
An alternative drying agent is alum, which may be found in the canning section as pickling alum (potassium aluminum sulfate), alum is excellent at drying but is not as readily available as borax.
Borax works on any skin. After drying is complete (should take no longer than a week) the skin can softened by working glycerin into it. Glycerin should be available at a drug store in food grade or may be found a craft store like Hobby Lobby as a soap additive. On bird skins I use 1 part glycerin to 3 parts water as a softener after drying.
You may find salt recommended, but unless salt is mixed with alum it is a poor agent, imo- it will dry the skin but it will later draw moisture from the air and on some future warm humid day the skin may become wet causing rot.
Further reading ; http://invictaflies....od.com/id76.htm
Posted 11 November 2019 - 10:51 AM
Mikechell, the only strays we have around here are annoying dogs that are let loose by our many stupid neighbors. They steal fur from your traps, and their owners get all mad when they get their leg caught in a snare.
tjm, That is really good advice. I think Imma do that.
James (TIER) Fox
1. The captain is always right
2. It's the deckhand's fault