Small Preserved Animal Shadowbox Display




About: I've been self employed most of my life. For better or worse, I'm a fountain of ideas. One of my best skills is brainstorming and problem solving, utilizing an extensive knowledge of novel technology and spe...

Perhaps a bit weird, but I happen to like shadowbox displays of preserved insects and such, and discovered a dead and perfectly preserved (dehydrated) common house mouse. I also like mice.
The mouse and a simple label (with the scientific mouse name) are stuck into a small IKEA shadowbox frame. I used a small amount of hot glue to hold the mouse. I think it looks great next to the similarly framed insect that was a gift.


Following the surprise discovery of the mummified mouse, I was interested in experimenting with this dehydration method for a small recently deceased bird I found, followed in quick succession by 3 other smaller interesting birds who all appeared to have died by collision with a particular window covered building, which was a bit sad. I placed them on a bed of cornmeal closed inside a small cardboard box. I rest the box on top of the hot water pipes in my basement, which are always very warm, in a dry room. I left them for a year and opened the box with some hesitation only to discover they were very dehydrated, weighing almost nothing and with no odor. I only think this method works for smaller lightweight recently deceased animals. This should go without saying, but pleasedon't kill animals. I consider this a way of honoring their interesting features and beauty. I framed them in a large shadowbox and again determined that hot glue was still the best/easiest method for securing them. I carefully trimmed some of the feathers in the area where I applied the glue.

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    6 Discussions


    6 weeks ago on Introduction

    HI. I wonder if the insect in the lower shadow box is a madagascar hissing roach? I have a few of these and one of them died. I was searching for some creative way to memorialize my pet when I found this site. Your insect looks like my insect.

    As an outdoorsman, I love having outdoor items on my wall, like deer skulls, my fish catches, camo, and such alike. But who puts mice on their wall? Ain't people trying to get them out of their houses in the first place? Weird yet if you put like a skull of a raccoon or something in there it would be cooler!

    2 replies

    7 years ago on Introduction

    Wow. It's gross to me but I love it. I have a shadow box with a seagull sternum I found at a beach once. I think it looks remarkably like a bone corset. Cool stuff.

    1 reply

    I know that mice gross a lot of people out, but I think they are sort of cute and interesting, and this guy was so perfectly preserved, I was amazed when I discovered him. I'm always fascinated by animal bones, feathers and the like if I see them (aside from the chicken bones you sometimes find in my neighborhood!)