Scraping Hides With Ants?

I have had little time to do much these days with the amount of time that I work. Three raccoon hides have sat in my garage for months and months waiting for the membrane-scraping step in the hide tanning process. I noticed them in the garage the other day and saw something amazing.

It appears as though the ants in my garage are eating away the membrane layer and leaving behind the skin. Take a closer look:

Do you know what this means? It means I won’t have to do the work! Everyone hates trying to scrape the membrane off a raccoons back. If the ants do this, it will save me a tremendous amount of time. It also makes me wonder how the hide will turn out after I tan it. Looking at these ants do their thing, it appears they are taking off exactly the right amount of membrane and not getting into the skin at all. This may not be the case. They may eat their way through. But either way, I’ll learn a valuable lesson. Anyone else used ants or bugs or other living things to do this kind of work?

5 Comments on “Scraping Hides With Ants?”

  1. For especially lazy people like myself this would be awesome. I’m interested to see if they leave the skin untouched, I hope they do!

  2. I’ve heard stories of people doing this. Never actually seen it, but teh stories support that method.

    I’ve heard though that it takes a lot longer, though.

  3. I have had eagles flesh cow hides for me. At first i chased them away, then i realized they were only taking the meat and fat. Pretty awesome when these win-win situations occur.