Library where you can check out dead animals

At the Alaska Resources Library and Information Services, anyone can check out skulls, taxidermy mounts, pelts, and other bits and pieces of dead animals for free. Librarian Celia Rozen says that the most popular items are bear and wolf furs used in Boy Scout rituals and also snowy owl mounts requested by Harry Potter party planners. As you might expect, educators appreciate the opportunity to make their lessons more, er, tangible.

“It gets them excited about being in biology class,” South Anchorage High School science teacher Chris Backstrum told the Alaska Dispatch News. “It starts the year off on a good foot."

"Need a wolf fur? A puffin pelt? All you need is a library card and a visit to the ARLIS library" (ADN)

"Something Preserved" (Great Big Story)

(photos by Marc Lester/ADN) Read the rest

Excellent mini faux-deer head from Perler Beads

I know what my kids will be making me after school today. Read the rest

Taxidermy clearance sale

Every retailer has the right to lower prices to drive interest. Read the rest

Gallbladder trophy mount

My friend has had gallstones, but with no insurance, just suffered through them for the last year. She just had her gallbladder taken out at the ER and is, happily, doing fine. But for all the trouble it has given her, I decided to stuff and mount the little sucker like a trophy animal!

I even included a few pebbles in the stuffing so you can feel the gallstones!

Construction was easy and took a few hours. I had the felt and thread in my hobby drawer; the pattern was free-form (trust me, I have no skill). I used cut up-scraps for the stuffing, and, of course, rocks from the yard. It's sealed with a few scarps of yarn. The wood plaque was bought at a hobby store for $1 and sanded/stained with leftovers found at my local hackerspace. Someone had donated excess brass sheet stock, which I used in a minimill to engrave the plaque. I decided to use a magnet to mount it to the plaque so that the plushie can also live on her fridge. Our space didn't have extra magnets, and I didn't find any suitable ones in a motor I took apart -- so I had to buy a six-pack at the store and am donating the extras for the next person. Read the rest

Taxidermied teacup tauntaun made from antique ram's head

Rogue taxidermist Lupa writes, "This is my latest altered taxidermy piece: an antique Corsican ram taxidermy mount turned into the fluffier, cuddlier--and smaller--cousin of the Common Tauntaun, complete with information booklet ('The Tragic Treatise of the Teacup Tauntaun'). It's a piece I made for a Star Wars themed group show this May at an art gallery here in Portland." Read the rest

Bike seat/taxidermy sculptures

Canadian artist Clem Chen produced a pair of lovely grotesque sculptures by combining bicycle seats with taxidermy, presently on display at the Hot Art Wet City Gallery in Vancouver. Read the rest

Documentary about Walter Potter, weird taxidermist

Morbid Anatomy's Joanna Ebenstein just edited a new book by Dr. Pat Morris about English taxidermist Walter Potter (1835-1918) whose creations are icons of Victorian wunderkammer whimsy. Here's a trailer for the related documentary, a collaboration with Ronni Thomas of The Midnight Archive. Walter Potter's Curious World of Taxidermy Read the rest

Monster made from taxidermied deer's butt

This pleasantly creepy fellow was once the tail end of a deer. Adam Wallacavage encountered him at Prof. Ouch's Bizarre Bazaar & Odditorium in Philadelphia. Read the rest

Bad taxidermy is good

Stacey Ransom points us to this delightful collection of terrifically bad taxidermy! Read the rest

Dead catcopter in flight

Good morning. Here is a high-quality photograph of the taxidermy catcopter Xeni posted video of yesterday. [Cris Toala Olivares / Reuters] Read the rest

"My Favorite Museum Exhibit": A collection of beloved collections

Full list of posts updated Monday, February 6. This is the final update.

Last week, I asked BoingBoing readers to send me images and stories about your favorite museum exhibits—beloved displays and collections squirreled away in museums that might not have a big profile outside your state or region. The challenge was triggered by an awesome photo of a mummified Ice Age bison on display in Fairbanks, Alaska.

But this series also has roots in my own love of the museum exhibits that defined my childhood. Over the coming week, I'll be posting more "My Favorite Museum Exhibit" entries. I'll update the list here, and this post will be the one-stop place to check if you want to read them all. But I also wanted to use this space to share one of my favorite museum exhibits—the Panorama of North American Plants and Animals at the University of Kansas' Dyche Museum of Natural History.

Taxidermy is not normally my thing. I love dinosaur bones, but dioramas always make me feel like I'd rather just be at a zoo, or watching a nature special on TV. This is especially true of the "local flora and fauna" sort of museum dioramas. I have seen squirrels, thanks. But the Panorama is something else, a work that transcends its genre to become true art and a temple to Maker creativity. Read the rest

Taxidermied Koopa Paratroopa

Darick Maasen (facebook) made this unique ornament from an antique taxidermied turtle and a pair of chicken wings. [Darick Maasen Art via Kotaku] Read the rest