After you harvest the bird, you need to decide what you are going to do with the bird. If you are going to breast the turkey out then take your turkey back to camp/home show your friends and celebrate. If you are going to pluck the turkey, its best to get to work right away, it will make for a much easier job. Once you have decided what you are going to do, remove the fan, beard, wings and one leg (the other leg will hold the license and need to stay attached to the turkey). Store these in a bag and continue to either breast the turkey out (remove its breasts) or pluck the bird.
The following will help you save a few dollars and make your own turkey tail mount.
What you’ll need:
- Borax 20 Mule Team (found at most stores, like Walmart)
- Hack Saw (Removing spurs from the legs)
- Sharp Knife/Blade
- 1–1/2” Stainless Steel T-Pins
First we will start on the Tail. Remove all of the meat and fat that you can with your knife.
Next cover the tail with borax, apply generously. Once you have covered it in borax, place a pile of borax on the cardboard and place the fan on top of it.
Now spread your fan out and put your T-pins to lock the fan in a desired spread. The borax will dry the tail in whatever position you let it set. Now is a good time to stick the beard in the borax too.
Next we will remove the Spurs from the Leg. Using your hack saw, grab the turkey foot and make a cut on the opposite side of the spur, this will help you maintain a good grip while cutting. After the fist cut, make your second cut between the spur and your hand. Repeat.
Next You have the option to do the wings, if you do it will be much like the tail. Remove the meat/fat and cover with borax. I like to have a spare wing to take out to the field and use to imitate a fly-down sound in the early morning, or add it to your DIY mount.
Next Take you spurs you removed and start boiling water in a pot. You need to boil the spurs in the water, but i always avoid submerging the entire spur. To help with this I bend a old coat hanger.
When you are finished add the fan to a plaque and your spurs to your collection!
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