Dermestid Beetles for European Mounts

Attagenus brunneus is a carpet beetle in the family Dermestidae. Dorsal view of isolated skin beetle on white background.

Kodiak Bones & Bugs Taxidermy sells dermestid beetles for European mounts when you want truly exceptional results. Whether you are looking to create your first DIY European mount or if you need to increase the size of your beetle colony to create multiple European mounts, we offer a variety of colony sizes to suit your needs.

What Are Dermestid Beetles?

Dermestid beetles are classified as Dermestidae, part of the Coleoptera family. They are flesh-eating beetles that will remove flesh from bones and skulls. Since they only eat the fleshy parts, they leave behind the skull and delicate structures often destroyed by other skull cleaning processes and methods.

What Are European Mounts?

European mounts are a type of skull mount some people enjoy displaying instead of a fully preserved head mount. The unique structure of the skull creates a one-of-a-kind mount since there are variations between the skulls of the same species. So, you could have several European deer mounts, and each one would be slightly different.

Why Use Beetles for European Mounts?

The use of beetles for European mounts provides numerous advantages compared to boiling, scraping, and other methods to remove flesh and meat from skulls, including:

  • No discoloration of the skull. With boiling, as the flesh falls off, the fat melts and soaks into the bone, resulting in a yellowish tint that is difficult to whiten. Teeth can also come loose, crack, and fall off the jaw bones.
  • No harsh chemicals. Some skull cleaning methods rely on harsh chemicals that can burn the skin and can be dangerous to inhale.
  • No gouges or skull damage. Scraping away the fleshy parts can often leave gouges in the skull. It is also much easier to damage delicate structures, especially those around the nasal cavity.
  • 100 percent eco-friendly. Allowing dermestid beetles to remove the flesh from skulls is completely eco-friendly. They use the flesh to grow your colony while leaving you with a cleaned skull.

How Difficult Is It to Keep European Mount Beetles?

With the proper setup, it is easy to raise and keep European mount beetles. All you need is the following:

  • A shelter to keep the beetles in
  • Some form of substrate
  • Some form of airflow circulation
  • A controlled environment below 80 degrees Fahrenheit but at least 65 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Minimal light, as beetles for European mounts are more active in the dark
  • A source of food and water

When you are not using dermestid beetles for European mounts, you can feed them dried meat or fish to keep your colony alive and growing.

How Long Do Dermestid Beetles Live?

Our European mount beetle colonies consist of fully mature beetles and larvae. Dermestid beetles have a life cycle that lasts between four and five months. They start out in eggs, hatch as larvae, and go through multiple molting times. Next, they bore into the substrate material and become a pupa. The pupa stage is the last stage before they become fully mature beetles.

How Many Dermestid Beetles for European Mounts Do I Need?

Initially, if you only have a single skull that needs cleaning, you can start with a colony of 300 beetles. Since our beetle colonies include larvae, it will only be a few weeks before you have more beetles capable of cleaning more skulls.

On the other hand, if you will have multiple skulls you want to clean, then you will want to start with at least 1000 dermestid beetles. This larger colony is ideal for most people that want to tackle larger projects, such as cleaning skulls for their family and friends.

Most professionals also start with this size colony, including forensic scientists, universities, schools, youth organizations, museums, and taxidermists.

Order Beetles for European Mounts Today

Kodiak Bones & Bugs Taxidermy guarantee our dermestid beetles for European mounts are 100 percent healthy since we raise them in a controlled environment. We guarantee no other pests, mites, or fly larvae in any of our colonies.

We ship across the US and Canada as well as numerous other countries. Order your dermestid beetle colony online today, or contact us at (907) 942-2847 if you have further questions about raising beetles to create your own European mounts.