Taking good care of your trophy is the first step to a great mount. Never drag your game, unless you can pick it up high enough to get it past the shoulders. If you need to drag your trophy, put it on a tarp so you don't drag the hair off. Four Seasons Taxidermy offers a skinning service, for those who are not comfortable skinning it themselves, for only $20. Here are a couple of things to remember if you are capeing the animal yourself. First, make sure you have a sharp knife. Make a cut all the way around the animal about six inches behind the front legs. Next, on the front legs, six to eight inches down, cut all the way around. Connect the body cut with the leg cut starting on the back side of the leg and proceeding up the leg to the body and straight back to the body cut. Now skin the animal up to the base of the head. You can now take a meat saw and saw the head off the carcass about four inches from the head down the neck. Bring the hide with the head intact to your taxidermist as soon as possible.
If you can't get your fish to your taxidermist soon after you caught it, wrap it in a WET towel. Make sure the fins are laying down and the tail is covered well. After wrapping it in the towel, put it in a plastic bag, remove as much of the air as possible and put it in the freezer.
Get your birds to the taxidermist as soon as possible. If you can't get them there soon, put the small birds, up to the size of most ducks, in old pantyhose and then a plastic bag. If you don't have a pair of hose, then wrap it up, keeping the wings and head tucked, and place it in a plastic bag. Make sure you remove as much of the air as possible. Freezer burn in birds can be very hard to deal with.
Do not field dress small mammals such as fox, otter, or coyote. Get them to the taxidermist as soon as possible. If you can't get it to the Taxidermist quickly, put it in the freezer to get it cooled down.
Remember heat and moisture are the enemies of your trophy. If you can keep it dry and get it cool quickly, you should have a good chance at a great mount. Remember to keep it frozen until you can get it to your taxidermist.