skull antlers

Mike: What’s the easiest way to get the skin and hair off the skull plate when I want to mount a buck’s antlers only? Thanks, Dennis

Hey Dennis: Lance Waln, who I watched grow up from a kid to a great hunter and accomplished taxidermist here in Virginia, says to cut and peel as much hide and hair off the skull plate as you can with your hunting knife. Getting the skin away from the bone and antler burr is tough sometimes; try a large flat-tip screwdriver and pry the skin away from the antler base. Use your knife to remove the last hairs that stick to the base and the burrs.

Skin as much meat and tissue as you can off the skull plate. It’s done, but if you want to go a step further, boil the skull plate in water for a few minutes. After that, the residual meat will flake easily off the plate. After boiling, handle the skull carefully because it’s fragile until totally dry.