oosik:

Wolf Skull Processing: Kotzebue, Alaska

I’ve had wolf skulls sitting in water for the past couple days in my backyard. My buddy got them in Kotzebue and is storing them at my place. Today we pulled them out to find that they were encased in an ice cylinder. This is perfect because they were thawed enough to work with but weren’t in the slightest smelly.

So after checking out the hollow inside and seeing their eyes, we cracked open the ice container with a hammer and got the skulls out. We were mostly focused on removing the temporal and masseter muscles along with the tongue. One of my first cuts was going to the skull through the temporal muscle. It’s obvious with the depth of the muscle as to why these animals need sagittal crests.  

Finally I got the toungue out and inverted it some to expose a rough back portion of the tongue which looks like something that would be expected out of a cat. The cut trachea is also inverted. With much effort, the mandible was not completely disarticulated but was loosened up greatly exposing the palate and offering a better look at the dentition.

The wolves are now each in their own bucket and will be macerating for roughly a month before their progress is checked.

Plywood palace.

Plywood palace.

Tent with Tree (Silvertip), Photogravure by Alice Bailey.

Tent with Tree (Silvertip), Photogravure by Alice Bailey.

Cut lines.

Cut lines.