You will need:
- A container long enough to hold your straightened squirrel tail
- A squirrel tail
- Lots of salt
Cut the tail from the squirrel.
Remove any excess meat attached to the tip of the tailbone.
Prepare a container to dry out the tail by covering the bottom of the container in salt.
Place the tail in the salt.
Pour salt to completely cover the tail.
Place in a dry, warm location for a week, or when tail has completely dried out.
Bones can be sold to Mepps for 16-26 cents each: https://www.mepps.com/squirrel-tail/.
You will need:
- 1 squirrel tail
- Sharp knife
Begin by using just your fingers to expose as much of the tailbone as possible.
Peel back a section of the skin of the tail. Using your knife, gently scrape between the skin and bone to coerce the skin off the tailbone. Rotate the tail and repeat until enough bone is exposed to grip with pliers (about 1-2 inches).
Firmly grip the exposed bone in the pliers in your dominant hand. Using your non-dominant hand, grip the base of the exposed tail and pull apart firmly with steady pressure. The tailbone should slip right off.
Discard the tailbone and soak the tail in a solution of 50% water, 50% denatured alcohol for at least 48 hours. This will tighten up the hair follicles on the tailbone ensuring that the hairs cannot be easily pulled out.
Remove from the alcohol solution and rinse thoroughly with running water. Apply shampoo and conditioner as you would your own hair. Towel dry, then blow dry as much as possible.
Lay the tail flat on a dry towel, and the tail should be fully dried and preserved within a week
Note that this process is similar to that of preserving a fox tail: