Wild Art Taxidermy, formerly in Cambridge and now with workshops in Kent, continues to make its comprehensive natural history services available to the East of England, as well as London, the South and South East (collection and delivery). Wild Arts proprietor, David Leggett, has long been recognised as one of the UKs top practitioners.
An anti-hunt, and anti-bloodsport philosophy guarantees that 90% and more of the individual mounts prepared at Wild Art are road traffic casualties, with the remaining 10% dying from natural causes. Post-mortem cases can often present particular technical difficulties, as can specimens badly damaged on the roads – a scientific approach and the development of new techniques combine at Wild Art to overcome these and similar problems.
Working close to the neighbouring scientific community developed to the point where Wild Art was asked in 1999 by staff at British Antarctic Survey to prepare an adult male Wandering Albatross, discovered dead at the nest-site, for return to the Island of South Georgia, where it is now the centre-piece of the island’s Museum. Two further Albatrosses now hang at British Antarctic Survey’s Cambridge headquarters, both mounted as if in flight. That same year brought a commission to model a pair of sparrowhawks for the UK’s leading accipiter expert – and it is for its owls and birds of prey that Wild Art is best known – a speciality originating from David’s lifelong passion – closely-studied appreciation and understanding of behaviour and habitat, individual species’characteristics and habits combining to produce true-to-life modelling, each one unique.
Personal recommendation and word-of-mouth have resulted in Wild Art specimens travelling to the United States, France, Germany and the Republic of Ireland, as well as throughout the United Kingdom. Repair and refurbishment of existing museum and private natural history specimens is a further specialism, with work undertaken as far away as Bristol, Cheltenham and the west country. Raptor cadavres from Wild Art are examined at the Institute for Terrestrial Ecology, part of the UK’s Natural Environment Research Council, to assist with organochlorine/pesticide residue studies; bird rings identified at raptor recoveries are collected and returned to the British Trust for Ornithology via the National History Museum, whilst raptor recovery details contribute to DEFRA’s wild bird data.
This practice is included in the Museums and Galleries Conservation Register
Wild Art Taxidermy Number
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