Category Archives: taxidermy

Murder Tree

There is a tree in our front yard that is a home to crows, the crows fly in and out of the tree all day.  During the school term the crows steal food from the grounds, they steal yogurt containers, muesli bars, and tuck shop paper bags.  All of the rubbish from the food ends up under the tree.  But then something started to happen, there were dead animals under the tree every day for 5 days.  A rat, another rat, a top knot pigeon, a lorikeet, another rat.  I started to expect a corpse under the tree after a few days.

I buried all of the animals under the tree in among all of the litter under the tree.  It’s a huge pine so there are heaps of needles and dirt underneath to bury the animals.

After that first 5 days we’ve only seen a few more dead animals under the tree.  Mostly old ones, like half mummified rats and bird parts. Today I was reminded of all of the animals the showed up under the tree over that week after my partner mowed under the tree uncovering the poorly buried bodies (it’s super dry under the tree and hard to dig up).

As I have a bit of a collections of bones and body bits the corpses under the tree don’t bother me and  I can easily bury them when they do show up.  We don’t think the crows were actually killing the the animals but that the rats were poisoned (there were heaps of dead rats in the area at the time) and that a cat originally killed the birds and the crows stole the bodies.

img_9599

Bird wing from the top knot dove

img_9608

Rat skull

Taxidermy

I’ve wanted to learn taxidermy since I was small, late primary school age, probably about 10.  When I was in year 8 (the first year of high school in Australia) I said that I wanted to be a taxidermist (when asked “what do you want to be when you grow up?”) Wanting to be a taxidermist (and actually saying that) are probably not the best moves for someone just starting high school, but whatever.

I finally got a chance to try it out in one of Mickey Alice Kwapsis’ workshops when she came to Brisbane.

Very excited to try more taxidermy.  In fact I have to order some scalpels this evening.

IMG_0782
When the rabbit was first done I had to pose it
IMG_0919
It has dried out really well but is a bit top heavy.