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Fur & Skin Prices

The base price that Basically Bush pays for possum fur or skins is dictated primarily by the market. Seasonality is also a price-determining factor. During the moult and into the summer months the fur is shorter than the remainder of the year and therefore has less value to the yarn spinner. We encourage hunters to operate from March to November to ensure better returns.

We believe that the possum harvesting industry has a robust future and strive to maintain a stable price throughout the year.

Fur

Possum fur is prone to attracting weevil if stored for long periods so always ensure your fur is clean and dry before storage. Short-term dry fur can be kept in an airtight rubbish bag but for long-term storage a wool fadge or breathable sack will be best. However, it is good practice to sell your fur on a regular basis to avoid storage issues.

We are currently buying hand-plucked and machine-plucked possum fur at $115/kg.

Skins/raw pelts

Possum skins/raw pelts are graded on quality and size. They have flaws with variable fur length and density so we are careful about what we select for processing.

1st Grade
Fur: No sign of re growth, good shine, good density, even fur length
Pelt: May contain minor flaws, 2-3 inkspots acceptable

2nd Grade
Fur: Minor regrowth evident, good shine, even fur length
Pelt: Some repair required, inkspots acceptable

The size is measured from the base of the tail to the ear holes:

  • Medium: 50-56cm
  • Large: 56-62cm
  • X-Large: 62cm plus

Salting is not an option for possum skins as it does not adequately protect the fur and preserve the skin. This makes them prone to slip.

Green skins

Skins must be frozen as soon as possible after skinning to prevent them from heating and the fur slipping. Heat will also weaken the leather and result in loss during tanning. Freeze skins individually before packing into bags or sacks to ensure that they cool quickly.

Skins placed into bags then put into a freezer will continue to heat in the middle even when they are frozen on the outside. When freezing fold skins down the spine to avoid freezer burn on the skin. How skins are presented for sale will have a direct impact on the price paid. All tails must be split, and excess meat and fat removed.

Dry skins

Dried skins must be presented according to the industry standard for preparation. If you are unsure, contact the Tannery and they will be able to assess if it would be best for you to present them frozen or dry. This will avoid disappointment and ensure that skins get the best return when graded.

Pinboards and sleeve boards are both acceptable. Skins must be scraped and tails turned before stretching to ensure that skins dry quickly. Skins can be air-dried, but not sun-dried. Dry in a small room with a dehumidifier or a small oil-filled or fan heater. When using a dehumidifier high heat is not required. Do not over-stretch skins, use a board width appropriate to the skin size. Make sure that the heads are pulled up evenly as this determines their size when graded.

When dry and removed from boards tails must be split and the fur given a quick card with a wire brush. When storing dry skins, hang in the bundles skin-to-skin in a cool, dry place. Do not keep them too long as they will go stale and have less value.

Raw possum skin prices

  • 1st X-Large: $22.00
  • 2nd X-Large $18.00
  • 1st Large: $17.50
  • 2nd Large: $16.00
  • 1st Medium: $14.00
  • 2nd Medium: $12.00
  • 3rd Large and X-Large: $8.00

Please phone the Tannery on 06 376 5884 to make an appointment for grading of skins.

Selling

We are always available to buy your fur or skins. Find your local agent here and get in touch.