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Old 03-30-2012, 12:02 AM
rolledthatho rolledthatho is offline
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Default How much time do you have from Kill to Harvest/cook



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Hi all, ive done some searching but its kinda hard to narrow down some keywords on this.

1. My main question is from time of kill how long do you have until the meat is no good? the question is mainly for deer, but if relative, then all animals.

2. What factors change this time? outside temperature? I plan on trying some deer hunting (during season, when it is colder. I imagine that would help with preservation too.) but this is also for a SHTF scenario as well, where there is no "season"

I imagine the best answer is "as quick as possible" and under ideal conditions id agree. Just trying to do some learning here really.

thorough explanation wanted (im consider myself a sponge!) but quick and to the point explanations welcome. Links, videos etc... on the subject is also welcome, id love to read up on it. Thanks in advance!
Old 03-30-2012, 01:57 AM
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It depends on temperature and only temperature...If it's 50F out then you have to get it processed off a lot faster then when it's 20F...You also want to remove the guts and then the skin ASAP and wrap it in cheesecloth to keep the blowflies off if it's warm enough for them.

We let our meat hang (age) in the cooler (unheated portion of the basement) before final butchering.

There are lots of books,videos, DVDs about "Care and Treatment to Big Game Animals" and "Butchering" out there and I'd strongly suggest taking a very basic evening meat cutting course at a local tech school.
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Old 03-30-2012, 04:00 AM
draht dog draht dog is offline
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Here in Texas early season you need to immediately skin and gut and put the animal on ice. It can be 80 degrees or more in the early season.
Old 03-30-2012, 04:15 AM
Savinkov Savinkov is offline
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In 80 degree temperature it will be spoiled in 24 hours. OTOH if it's 50 degrees
you're better off to let it hang and cure for a couple of days. But even then you
have to keep it *completely* covered against flies when you're not working on it
and even cheesecloth isn't good enough; you need a good muslin game bag.

If you're organized as all bloody hell you'll have bought a refrigerated tractor-trailer
unit and pulled the housing and the refrigeration unit off and made a walk-in
cooler out of it, with a big chopping table in there. Then all your redneck friends can
come "borrow" it in return for giving you game meat, whisky, and teenaged girls.
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Old 03-30-2012, 01:21 PM
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Sorry but I just can't bring myself to provide any useful information to someone who uses "rolledthatho" as an ID.
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Old 03-30-2012, 02:33 PM
44 Flattop 44 Flattop is offline
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The decaying process starts immediately when the animal dies. It is up to you to slow it. Smoking, cooking, salting, freezing and canning or anything else you have available needs to be employed to slow the process. It could be from a few hours to a few weeks depending on what you do.

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Old 03-30-2012, 02:50 PM
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After killing an animal you need to gut it and skin it. After that Temperature is the biggest deciding factor. Its usally in the 20's/30's where I hunt so we will hang a young deer for 1 to 2 days. When it comes to big bucks we may go up to 5 days before butchering. Also keep in mind that clean kills are important. Meat can get real gamey and not as tasty if you have a sloppy shot and run the deer all over trying to get that final shot. Especially applies to Bucks.
Old 03-30-2012, 04:09 PM
NETWizz NETWizz is offline
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I would say you have 3 or 4 days if you put it in the refrigerator.


If SHTF, I would suggest cooking it right away unless it is in Winter and never gets above 45 even during the day.
Old 03-30-2012, 06:44 PM
rolledthatho rolledthatho is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AtticusFinch View Post
Sorry but I just can't bring myself to provide any useful information to someone who uses "rolledthatho" as an ID.
I guess luckily for me there were plenty of people on here who were knowledgeable, that didn't decide to clog a post with useless slander! I've been a member of way to many forums. There's always one huge post count that tries to belittle a "newb" It wouldn't have been Friday without it! And FWIW, no apologies necessary, i'd still save your life if you ever came into my ED.

Thanks to everyone who pitched in, i definitely would like to read more about it. I wish i had time for the local "meat class" spoken about too, but sadly it wouldn't fit into my hectic life right now.


Lastly, just so i think i have everything clear. If the deer/game was shot in 85 degree weather, it would be fine if field dressed immediately and put on ice? how quick would it need to be put on ice? 1-2 hours? less?
Old 03-31-2012, 02:27 AM
Savinkov Savinkov is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rolledthatho View Post
.
.
Lastly, just so i think i have everything clear. If the deer/game was shot in 85 degree weather, it would be fine if field dressed immediately and put on ice? how quick would it need to be put on ice? 1-2 hours? less?
"As fast as possible". i.e. once you shoot it, gut it right there, take it
to camp right away (i.e. don't hang it up while you go hunt some more),
and when you get it to camp, cut it up and put it on ice right away (i.e.
don't stand around drinking and reliving the kill with your redneck friends.)

I haven't killed one in hot weather but I figured if I did, instead of just
gutting it and bringing it home and skinning it and cutting it up at home,
I'd skin it there and quarter it right on the spot and pack the parts in ice in
some BIG coolers. Which would then fill up the whole camper, but
wtf. (Item. HAVE lots of big coolers. Know where to get a whole ****-pot
full of ice real fast, i.e. where is the nearest backwater town with a store
that has ice.)

If you get an elk you've got some *serious* work on your hands getting
all *that* on ice.

It's important to get the hide off. You'll find the meat warm under the
hide even after it's cooled off everywhere else (Duuh! What's that hide
on there for anyway??)

Some people have said, find out where there's a meat locker and take
it there and pay them to store it until you're "ready"... But I'm not
paying somebody for his mega-refrigerator if I can help it.

Bring lots of salt and salt the hide right away or you'll lose that too.

I can't believe this information isn't out there and I'm having to post it
here; I don't know jack **** compared to most real hunters.
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Old 03-31-2012, 10:17 AM
rolledthatho rolledthatho is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Savinkov View Post
"As fast as possible". i.e. once you shoot it, gut it right there, take it
to camp right away (i.e. don't hang it up while you go hunt some more),
and when you get it to camp, cut it up and put it on ice right away (i.e.
don't stand around drinking and reliving the kill with your redneck friends.)

I haven't killed one in hot weather but I figured if I did, instead of just
gutting it and bringing it home and skinning it and cutting it up at home,
I'd skin it there and quarter it right on the spot and pack the parts in ice in
some BIG coolers. Which would then fill up the whole camper, but
wtf. (Item. HAVE lots of big coolers. Know where to get a whole ****-pot
full of ice real fast, i.e. where is the nearest backwater town with a store
that has ice.)

If you get an elk you've got some *serious* work on your hands getting
all *that* on ice.

It's important to get the hide off. You'll find the meat warm under the
hide even after it's cooled off everywhere else (Duuh! What's that hide
on there for anyway??)

Some people have said, find out where there's a meat locker and take
it there and pay them to store it until you're "ready"... But I'm not
paying somebody for his mega-refrigerator if I can help it.

Bring lots of salt and salt the hide right away or you'll lose that too.

I can't believe this information isn't out there and I'm having to post it
here; I don't know jack **** compared to most real hunters.
Thanks again for the help. And the information HAS to be out there, finding it is the problem. a few google searches (of basically variations of my post title) came back with so much crap none of which seemed helpful. I now understand the urgency. As for salt/ meat coolers etc. that really will never be an issue, at least for my preparedness because i prepare for the basics. one pack, two guns, on foot. no power etc... So basically i would need my spit ready before i went out to camp so i can skin, gut and cook that thing!
Old 03-31-2012, 10:58 AM
Hunter87 Hunter87 is offline
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in western australia we shoot at night only because ur meat will get attacked but flies in under a min also with prof shooters you need to get the meat to 3 cel in under 4 hrs thats summer and winter.
Old 03-31-2012, 11:30 AM
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Shanks Mare Shanks Mare is offline
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HUMIDITY!


It isn't just temperature.....if humidity is high, yet its still cool enough to leave hang, you'll get mold, no big deal-just trim it off when you butcher.

My rule has always been, if its under 52*f, I leave it hang. Some folks will argue this point, but I've asked several pro butchers, and this is the temp they told me.

Look, beef hangs for 64 days....I let my deer hang for two weeks, IF I can.

It is the enzymes in the meat that need time to break down, and if done right, the meat will taste much better.

Another point, deer fat DOES NOT freeze at the same temp as beef, SO YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR FREEZER COLDER.

If you have ever noticed deer meat getting "gamier" as the year goes along, and you don't remember it being that "gamey", when it was first butchered, its because deer fat will be going rancid as it sits in your freezer. Deer meat needs to be frozen about 10 degrees colder than beef.

Don't believe me? Try it.....won't cost you much to try.

Another trick I use to save meat....after killing, and about to hang, trim off all the blood-shot meat, even to the point of taking one, or both shoulders off the carcass, and trimming off all "un-pleasantness" inside.

The blood will cause the surrounding meat to rot as it goes rancid. You'll save more meat that way.

Good Luck!
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Old 03-31-2012, 05:34 PM
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the aussie guys right if there is flies you got to get movein,the mare is right also you must trim all the fat,then its all about temp in the noreast we can let the hang in the shed the meat gets better with age,we use 40 degrees and below for a week or ten days and cut off the black.We gut them in the field,lighter for dragging,then skin them at home same day.You should make new friends that hunt,fish, and procces there meat or your in for alot of time and wasted meat.
Old 03-31-2012, 05:50 PM
Phoynix Phoynix is offline
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Had to butcher a 1ton bull once during the heat of summer it was a 46c day not sure what that is in F.

IT was about two hours from slaughter to getting it in a cool room and the fat had already gone rancid so we had to cut as much off as we could, when we came back a week later to carve it up the bone marrow was rancid and the whole lot was only good for the dogs.

Turned out even the dogs wouldnt eat it.

You have not smelt "BAD" untill you cut through bone thats had the marrow go rancid.
Old 03-31-2012, 06:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phoynix View Post
Had to butcher a 1ton bull once during the heat of summer it was a 46c day not sure what that is in F.

You have not smelt "BAD" untill you cut through bone thats had the marrow go rancid.
46C = 114.8F

Smell hundreds of dead bodies in the same temp down in the Sinai desert during the Yom Kippur War along with the vomit, urine, feces, blood with the body parts
Old 03-31-2012, 10:23 PM
Savinkov Savinkov is offline
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(hmm... that last one *does* sound pretty yummy... although if I smelled it in Berkeley
or Cambridge I probably wouldn't mind)

I recently read that it's the synovial fluid in the joints that makes meat acquire an
inferior taste or whatever, while it's hanging, and that professional butchers drain
it off right after slaughtering the animal. Has anyone ever heard of this? I've
never heard of anyone doing it to game animals... ?
Old 03-31-2012, 11:01 PM
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technically you can have a 2 week old critter thats all nasty and make it. eatable by parboiling after trimming off the nastiest parts
Old 04-01-2012, 02:06 AM
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Thank you for sharing.
Old 04-01-2012, 03:30 AM
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"Wild" taste in meat has more to do with HOW an animal dies not how or when it was butchered...Of course venison tastes different then Pronghorn and both are different from Mountain Goat...Even beef tastes different amongst itself, like Angus or Kobe.

Shoot a deer and it drops instantly or staggers a couple of feet then drops--great tasting meat...Now shoot a deer and it runs off 70, 80 yards and the meat is a little gamy; run off hundreds of yards and it is very gamy.

Like humans, animals secrete juices when in stress situations--like our endorphins, adrenaline etc...The longer the animal suffers, the more juices are secreted tainting the meat.
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