Our Taxidermy School

SECOND NATURE is the proven choice of career minded taxidermy students from coast to coast

Your career as a Professional Taxidermist starts here!
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Life Size Mountain Goat

One of our VA students, Steven McElheran from California working on a life size Mountain Goat

Rocky Mountain Elk

Jared Poole from Idaho working on an Elk shoulder mount.

Life Size Coyote

Sarah Cooke from Canada with her Coyote/Bird mount. Nice job.

Creative Taxidermy

A Raccoon mount done by student Bob Roberts of Pendleton, Oregon

Life Size Dall Sheep

Bill Collins and his Life size Dall Ram on a custom made rock base.

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Bobcat on a Limb Mount

Student Kevin Norman from Utah mounted this nice life size Bobcat



The above video explains how to choose poses, turns and custom display options for Whitetail Deer.
Click the icons in the screen to play and enlarge the video screen. Enjoy!



Entrance Requirements

Students must be at least 16 years old, be able to speak, read and write in English and have reasonable manual dexterity.

Second Nature School of Taxidermy

Is Veteran owned and operated as well as approved to accept students using VA and GI Bill education benefits.

Come learn taxidermy in an easy-going atmosphere on the beautiful Blackfoot River in Western Montana.

Second Nature School of Taxidermy is proud of what our school has to offer our students.  We constantly strive to improve our methods of instruction.

Our method of hands-on taxidermy instruction, along with our business and marketing course, will provide you with the knowledge you need to start and operate your own successful taxidermy studio.

At Second Nature School of Taxidermy, we focus on teaching you the artistic skills needed to create beautiful mounts and the attention to detail that will keep your customers coming back for more.


Why should I choose Second Nature School of Taxidermy?

Most taxidermy schools that run a 4 – 6-week program offer you a very limited curriculum.  For example, they may offer: One Whitetail deer shoulder mount, one life-sized raccoon or fox, one largemouth bass, one pheasant and a small rug.

They do this because its easiest for THEM!

Second Nature School of Taxidermy lets you choose the species you want to mount.  Our curriculum consists of TWO shoulder mounts, TWO life-sized mounts, TWO birds, and TWO fish.

We believe that mounting TWO of everything, and having a choice in the species is very important because:

  • You gain invaluable experience and confidence through repetition.

  • You leave school with twice as many mounts for your showroom.

  • You can mount the species that your customers will be bringing to your studio.


Over the last 15 years we have refined our 4-week course

to provide the best educational value to our students and 90% of our graduates have opened their own successful taxidermy studios.

Taxidermy as a career

If you are interested in the art of taxidermy, it quite likely started with a love of hunting, fishing, and the outdoors.  With the proper training, you can turn this interest into a profitable and exciting career.

When you take into consideration that on average, most professional taxidermists are a year or more behind on their work, you can clearly see that opportunities for trained taxidermists are at an all-time high.

Is taxidermy profitable?  Let’s look at a couple of examples:

Since Deer shoulder mounts comprise the majority of most professional taxidermist’s workload, we’ll use them for our first example.

Let’s say that you are charging $450 for Deer shoulder mounts, although that’s probably low end of the price spectrum these days.  Now let’s say that you take in 75 Deer this hunting season.  Again, this is a conservative number.

Your gross revenue on those 75 Deer heads at $450 each is $33,750.

Now let’s deduct the price of needed supplies.  $45 for a form, $40 for tanning (if you use a commercial tannery), $25 for eyes and ear liners and $10 for miscellaneous supplies like clay paper mache, screws, shipping costs, etc… equals out to $120 per Deer.

That leaves you a net profit on your 75 Deer of $24,750! (And that’s only Deer mounts!)

Most taxidermists will have approximately 8 hours into a Deer shoulder mount, start to finish.  That includes caping the Deer, fleshing, salting, sewing holes, mounting and finish work.

This means you will have 600 hours into your 75 mounts.

That’s $41.25 per hour.  $330 per 8-hour day.  $1,650 per 40-hour week.  $6,600 per month!

Remember that the examples we’ve used here are conservative examples.  Imagine the possibilities if you can double or even triple the numbers we have used here.

Now, figure an Elk, Moose, Antelope, Caribou, Bear, Birds, Fish, Life sized animals and antler plaques and you can clearly see that taxidermy can be a very profitable profession.  During your course at Second Nature School of Taxidermy, we will go further into pricing business practices, and marketing strategies.

Attending a good taxidermy school will give you a lot more credibility than someone who is self-taught.  It shows in the quality of your finished work.  It also shows your clientele that you have taken your profession seriously, and have invested your own time and money into qualifying yourself to do the best job possible on their trophy.

Using the examples above, you can see how quickly you can recoup the money spent on your taxidermy training.  Investing in yourself is always money well spent.


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