Introduction to Coyote Mounting and Coyote Skull Cleaning Methods
If you’ve lived in rural areas almost anywhere in the United States, there’s a good chance you’ve had to deal with coyotes at one point or another. In some locations, they can be a downright nuisance. They are effective predators and can kill whitetail fawns very easily. The easiest solution to this problem is hunting or trapping them. But while many treat them as vermin, there’s no denying that their furs and skulls can actually look great when preserved. Coyote mounting and skull cleaning isn’t something a lot of people do, but you’ve got several options if you’re interested!
Coyote Hunting or Trapping?
Depending on how you’re going to mount a coyote, hunting or trapping can be a better application. For example, if you’re after a big coyote skull mount, hunting makes more sense. You can physically pick out the biggest coyote in the pack before shooting it. If you don’t care about the skull size, trapping works because you just need any coyote.
But if you’re after a full body mount or coyote pelt wall mount, trapping it sometimes makes more sense. If you check your traps frequently (which you should anyway), a coyote isn’t likely to chew at its leg too much before you can get there and dispatch them. A simple head shot (often in the ear) with a .22 long rifle is plenty enough to do the job and doesn’t leave a giant hole in the pelt that needs to be repaired.
What is considered a Trophy Coyote?
Coyote mounting is the same as all wild game mounts – “trophy” is in the eye of the beholder. Maybe you’re interested in taking a coyote with a really beautiful pelt. Some animals have really full coats with bold colors (e.g., dark black contrasting with gray and red) and some have mangy, thin coats that are all one blended color of gray. Maybe you just want a big coyote, either for its skull size or for a coyote rug. In that case, males tend to be bigger than females, and northern states tend to have larger animals than southern states. But a truly big coyote runs close to 50 pounds. If you can find one like that, it would make a great pelt or coyote skull mount!
Coyote Mounting Options
As mentioned, there are several methods for mounting a coyote. If you’ve got a real coyote infestation on your property, you could try a few of each style.
European Skull Mount
A coyote European mount is the easiest coyote mounting option and doesn’t take up much space, yet it produces a really interesting taxidermy piece for your collection. Similar to cleaning a bear skull, you’ll need to remove the hide and clean the skull a bit – both to save on shipping and because the beetles don’t need a feast. The video below shows you how to clean a coyote skull before sending it in.
As you can see on our services page, after sending your coyote skull into Beetle Juice Skull Works, we let the beetles thoroughly clean it inside and out. We then kill any remaining beetles on or in the skull and degrease it. Finally, we go through the process of whitening a coyote skull, and then ship it back to you. You’ll have a bright and beautiful skull to display on the shelf in no time. You can always get a coyote skull mount completed in addition to a full body mount and/or tanned hide, just one more trophy to remember a great hunt or trap line!
Full Body Coyote Mount
Whether you choose to do a full body mount or even just a coyote shoulder mount, you’ll need to preserve the pelt as best you can. Your taxidermist can likely find a coyote form in several different positions and postures to suit your style. You can also have them add natural elements (e.g., tree branches, grass, etc.) to the coyote mount to make it look very realistic.
If you decide on just preserving the pelt, you’ll either need to tan the hide yourself or find someone to do it for you. After skinning the coyote, you’ll need to remove the remaining flesh and fat from the interior and salt the hide. Then you’ll use various household or store-bought chemicals to pickle and tan the hide, followed by stretching and softening it. If you just want a hide to hang on the wall, you shouldn’t need to soften it that much. But you definitely should with a rug mount. This is a process, so make sure you know what you are getting into before starting. Again, if your going this route you can still get a coyote skull mount!
Are coyotes ruining your hunting property or harassing your farm animals? If so, it might be time to give coyote mounting some serious thought. Every time you look at that skull or pelt, you’ll be reminded that there’s one less canine out there to wreak havoc.