I am a first time bear hunter, and I was just wondering how hard is it to do your own rug? Any tips tricks or instructions, websites I should know?

If not, does any one know of a good taxidermist close to the St.John's area, and about how much does it cost to get a rug or head mount done?



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I would start by googling how to skin a bear....

I have done all that. I have read alot on it, I got books also, but none of them really go into any real detail on how to do a rug except for the cuts. What is the best way to stretch it?  A wooden frame with line, plywood and nails?  Do I have to treat it with anything besides salt? Do I wash it with anything?  I know to brush it and blow the dust out of it. I just havent seen any instructions from start to finish and I really dont want to ruin it.

Any tips would be appreciated, Thanks

...my advice in your case is get it professionally done and maybe start off trying to do a fox or something for practice first instead of having a bear with ears eyes and lips that looks like crap....However,google home tanning if you really want to do it yourself,  the steps for rug making were an easy google   http://www.ehow.com/how_2092366_bear-skin-rug.html   but they suggest sending it for tanning.....it's an ambitious jump from never having shot a bear or done taxidermy but possible probably....have you ever caped a moose? If not that would be a start even if you just turned the ears and did a cows eyes or something on someones moose head opening day(could save the skull for bait even) a bears skin is much thinner and you will nick it easier though....you could also ask TheWildNorth on youtube how to tan your hide and he has skinning vids that would be a huge help to watch(i'm subbed , love his stuff)....worse come to worse unjoint the wrists and leave the paws and skull in and freeze it till you get a taxidermist,get it in the freezer fast though dont dick around or the hair will pull....get it skinned, get it salted ,OR get it skinned and cold fast.....if possible get it right to the taxidermist the perfect solution,you can brush it when he gives it back but make sure its dead before you start blowing the dust off,they don't like that...sorry couldn't resist

Thanks for the info. Sorry I should have mentioned I was going to do the rug with the head and paws OFF. I like a challenge but knew that was way too much to bite off the first try. I have read all the info on trimmimg around the eyes and lips etc..I think I will wait for that at a later date. I have tried to find a taxidermist but the only one listed in the phone book or on Canada411 is in Corner Brook (Summerside). Do you know of any within a 1-1 1/2hr drive of St.John's? I guess maybe it is just tanning the hide I should google.


Thanks again for the info.

Hey Doug,


I bagged my first bear this year and was quite surprised at how few taxidermists there are available on the island. I ended up dropping my bear off in Summerside, because it was on the way back home and appeared to be the best bang for your buck. From what I can see, these guys do quite a good job and were cheaper than a couple others I was able to reach, thanks to some of the outfitters I called. With Summerside you are looking at $175 per linear ft from tip of nose to tail. They found it cheaper and better qulity to send the pelts to Sask. for tanning rather than do it themselves. The highest price was $210/ft. Closest was Lewisporte to the avalon.




Hope this helps in your decision process.

Thanks alot for the info, Let me know how your rug turns out. Thanks again.

Rex Jennings in Corner Brook is about the best you will find in Atlantic Canada, and he'd probably give you a lot of tips to DIY.  Biggest challenge is cleaning it and tanning it so it won't rot.   On a side note an average size rug will cost you $1200 if done by a pro....after you skin and clean.

Hi there just wanted to add in here that I have hunted bears now for the last 4 or 5 years, I tried the past spring my own hand at taxidermy....I like yourself, couldnt find a great deal of information so I just dove in. We had my husbands sent of to a taxidermist in Grand Falls, we have to pick his up soon.

Here is a pic of my finished bear head. The rug is what Im planning to try next. And I must say, it wasnt too hard and I think it looks great for some of the stuff Ive seen.

If you have any questions, you can drop me a line.


Wow Kim great job. You would never say it was your first one.

Thanks a lot, I guess you dont know until you try. I know he is far from perfect. But he stayed together, no hair has fallen out and he look s real not lilke a horrific teddy bear! haha


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