Why the Best Animal Trophies Begin with Proper Field Care
There was a time when proper field care was a matter of honor and respect. Unfortunately, that no longer seems to be the case for the majority of hunters today. Many outfitters do the bare minimum, with hunters not knowing the difference, or everyone assumes someone else along the line will handle it. Poor field care is a sad and all-too-common statement about hunting today, and it means that many great trophy skins are lost before they even begin.
The Way It Was
Mike Boyce, the owner of Animal Artistry, has a story about field care that stands out among his many hunting memories. He was hunting Dall Sheep in the Yukon and made a kill on a great ram. Afterwards, his Indian guide set up for a lengthy process of preparing the skin. He made a small fire and a cup of tea before reaching into his saddlebag to retrieve his tools. They were in a beautiful leather carrying case that unrolled to resemble a selection reminiscent of a surgeon’s tools. The guide carefully and expertly skinned the animal, turning the ears, splitting the lips, and thoroughly applying salt before rolling it up and placing it on the back of his saddle. Needless to say, the trophy came back from the tannery in beautiful shape and it was easy to create a great mount. This level of care and attention to detail may have once been the standard, but it’s unusual these days, when there is very little emphasis on proper field care.
Field care is a dying art, and the best advice is to take responsibility for it yourself. At Animal Artistry, we finish the hunt by creating trophies that do justice to the animal and the experience, but the most exceptional trophies always begin with the hunter. Proper field care is a learned skill, and we’re here to help. Download our free field care and preparation guide, and contact us for specific instructions regarding skinning and measurements.