Some of the most experienced taxidermists in Africa are at work near Nairobi, Kenya on a large order from the Nigerian Government for a consignment of mounted animals to adorn the Second All-Africa Festival of Art and Culture to be held in Lagos in 1975.
GV INT Men rubbing down fibre glass replica of a giraffe
SV Workman rubbing down surface
SV Schenk smoothing surface
SV & CU Wrapping wire round tail (2 shots)
SV Schenk climbs ladder against giraffe
CU Glass eyes of giraffe
CU & SV glue paste being mixed (2 shots)
SV & CU paste being rubbed onto giraffe (3 shots)
SV & CUs Giraffe skin placed over replica (3 shots)
SV Skin tacked to legs of giraffe and sown up (2 shots)
SV Men stitching up skin on legs PAN UP TO men working on head (2 shots)
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Background: Some of the most experienced taxidermists in Africa are at work near Nairobi, Kenya on a large order from the Nigerian Government for a consignment of mounted animals to adorn the Second All-Africa Festival of Art and Culture to be held in Lagos in 1975.
The order from the Nigerian Government includes complete body mounts of an elephant, a rhinoceros, a hippopotamus and a giraffe with about 25 smaller animals.
After the Festival is over, the animals will form the nucleus of a permanent Natural History Exhibition.
The giraffe is the first of the large animals to be completed and it will cost the Nigerian Government about GBP 1,500 (3,600 US dollars). The animal, a particularly large specimum measuring over 16 1/2 feet high (5 1/2 mtrs was donated by the Kenyan Government.
The hippo and the rhino will cost about the same and the elephant about GBP 6,000 (14,400 US dollars).
Giraffes are difficult to mount, partly because of the great thickness of the skin. To ensure a good mount it is essential to scrape down the skin as soon as the animal is killed.
Zimmermans, the taxidermists, who employ 150 people have used a slightly new method in mounting the giraffe. First a model of the giraffe was made in clay. Then a thin layer of fibreglass was coated over the clay model and the clay later removed through holes cut in the fibre glass. The fibreglass shell is then smoothed down with rasps and covered with glue before the skin in fastened on in one piece.
In this way Zimmermans, which is partly owned by the Kenyan Government earns large amounts of foreign currency each year.