GRANTSBORO, N.C. (WNCT) – Tucked away along a back road in Pamlico County, one man creates unique masterpieces.
“It’s really an art form,” said Page Nethercutt, owner of Moore’s Swamp Natural Wildlife Creations.
Nethercutt’s work is known around the world.
“I cater more to customization to give the client something that their buddy doesn’t have,” said Nethercutt. “What they want to try to do is depict taxidermy as an art form.”
But creating world famous pieces hasn’t always come easy for Nethercutt.
“When I was 8, I think, I mounted my first squirrel,” recalled Nethercutt. “I wasn’t very good, and I knew I wasn’t very good. But I listened to people with more experience than me, took what they said to heart, tried it, and got better.”
So much so, that the walls of his office are now lined with awards. He’s the ninth person in North Carolina named a master taxidermist and has even won taxidermist of the year in Pennsylvania of all places.
“The World Championships, I haven’t won yet. We’ve gotten close,” said Nethercutt.
Nethercutt is always up for a challenge.
“Probably one of the hardest subjects I’ve done was a 15 foot crocodile,” said Nethercutt. “It had to fit on a shelf that he had up on the wall.”
His hard work has led him to cross paths with some familiar faces.
“We met Tom Selleck, Erik Estrada, George Bush, Sr., General Schwartzkopf,” recalled Nethercutt.
He’s even done a piece for former Green Bay Packers star Ron Cox. But his true passion lies in the flock rather than the herd.
“It turned out that I actually had a natural talent for birds and they became a lot more enjoyable and so I ran with the birds,” said Nethercutt.
Nethercutt’s shop has been in Pamlico County for the past 40 years. From the start, Moore’s Swamp has been a family business.
“My dad started dating my mama. In order to fit in with the family, he had to go deer hunting with them,” said Nethercutt. “After he got his first deer, my mama went and had it mounted for him, and he thought it was the most pitiful deer he had ever seen. So he found a book on taxidermy and taught himself. He passed away about a year and a half ago.”
As far as taking over Moore’s Swamp two decades ago, Nethercutt said: “I would say it’s humbling. It’s a humbling experience. I always looked at it like I get to come and play every day. It makes life a whole lot easier to deal with when you enjoy your job.”
It’s also easier when you’re passionately carrying on a family legacy.