The May excursion was a visit to the Academy of Taxidermy, which is also the home of the Museum of Natural History, in James St, Guildford. Nine members made the trip up and enjoyed a very sociable morning. The Museum has over 2000 taxidermy items on display, which enables visitors to closely study specimens of animals from all over the world.
The proprietor, Michael Buzza provides training in taxidermy as well as providing taxidermy services where required. The fauna represented includes birds, mammals (both small and large), reptiles, fish and crustaceans. The quality of the taxidermy is first class and provides a very life-like representation of each specimen. Notable exhibits included a Barn Owl, Wedge Tailed Eagles, a Sailfish, a Cape Buffalo and a Rhinoceros. There is also a cabinet with draws containing mounted insect specimens. Although only a small facility we spent a couple of hours exploring the exhibits, and on each time around discovering something that we had not noticed on a previous circuit of the exhibits.
While not the same as encountering live animals in their natural habitats during a walk through bushland the Museum is certainly worth a visit, especially during winter when the weather may be unsuitable for outdoor activities. After our visit we had a pleasant lunch in a nearby café before catching the train home. It had been a very enjoyable morning.