Invicta Flies - First Step & Fleshing
The first step, after the animal has been skinned, is to wash it. This simple step alone gets rid of all the dirt and blood, and most of the harmful organisms which could present a hazard to your health, or cause the skin to deteriorate. If it is not possible to work the hide immediately, coat the flesh side with uniodized salt and rub a little into the fur/feather side. Roll up and store in a cool location.
Wash the hide thoroughly in cold water with an antibacterial dish soap. Rinse out and wring lightly. Proceed with fleshing.
The next step in the preservation process, and one of the most important, is in preparing the hide. Raw skins, whether from processing stations, or skinned from your own legally hunted animals, must be scraped of all attatched flesh and fat. Do not wait to do this- the longer the skin is unpreserved, the more danger you run of slippage occurring (the hair falling out).
Lay the fresh hide fur or feather side down on a board, or preferrably a rounded beam. Use a somewhat dull knife to scrape the flesh side of the skin. You will see the meat and fat being scraped off. Use a bit of force, but don't over do it, as you could scrape a hole in the hide. If there are particularly large bits of meat still on the hide, trim away at these and scrape as much as possible.
If it doesn't seem to be getting everything off the hide, don't worry... this is only the first scrape. Place scraped hide in a solution of one cup uniodized salt/gallon warm water for eight to ten hours. Remove from solution, rinse, wring lightly, then finish scraping (fleshing) completely. Rinse again and wring out. You are now ready to preserve.