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Old 10-07-2011, 12:27 AM
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Default How do you handle gut shot deer?



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Got my first deer of my adult life.

Problem is that even though it was a double lung shot, the arrow nicked the stomach going in.

So... when I gutted it, it was a smelly mess and junk went everywhere inside the body cavity.

Died pretty quickly - within 20 min. and I cleaned it within an hour.

I didn't bother with the tenderloin.
For the hind quarters, I cut off significant portions near the groin, took the backstraps.
Arrow exited right shoulder and I ditched that as well figuring it carried some junk on it's way out.

What's the risk of a gutshot? From what I'm reading, people are mostly afraid of the situation where the deer dies hours later. Is the concern about bacteria circulating through the meat via the bloodstream?

The meat I butchered smelled fresh and looked good. I'll cook it well.

What would you have done?
Old 10-07-2011, 07:50 AM
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I wouldn't worry about it at all. I would have cleaned it out best I could in the field when I field dressed it and when I got home hung it up and hosed it out really well.

Normally, I trim away the trauma areas but you really don't even have to do that.
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Old 10-07-2011, 08:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AtticusFinch View Post
I wouldn't worry about it at all. I would have cleaned it out best I could in the field when I field dressed it and when I got home hung it up and hosed it out really well.

Normally, I trim away the trauma areas but you really don't even have to do that.
X2

I would not have let that tenderloin go to waste.
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Old 10-07-2011, 08:33 AM
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The tenderloins are the best and tenderest of the bunch
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Old 10-07-2011, 08:46 AM
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I thought you were going to be speaking of losing the deer.

As far as contaminated meat, I would have done the same. Sure it'll stink, but once rinsed, the meat should be fine.
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Old 10-07-2011, 08:53 AM
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Many of the perceptions about gut shot animals spoiling the meat came from a time when the deer carcass was not processed like it is today. In the old days, people did not tend to hose a carcass out, and there was little if any refrigeration. So, the bacteria from a gut shot animal would be working to spoil the meat.

These days, at least for me, its usually just a few hours between shooting a deer and the venison being processed and put up to the freezer. And if the carcass needs hosed out with water, or a particular cut of meat needs washed, I do that too. I'm not putting up meat that appears contaminated.

Now if you were not going to be able to wash the carcass for a few days, then that might be a different matter.
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Old 10-07-2011, 11:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adobewalls View Post
Many of the perceptions about gut shot animals spoiling the meat came from a time when the deer carcass was not processed like it is today. In the old days, people did not tend to hose a carcass out, and there was little if any refrigeration. So, the bacteria from a gut shot animal would be working to spoil the meat.

These days, at least for me, its usually just a few hours between shooting a deer and the venison being processed and put up to the freezer. And if the carcass needs hosed out with water, or a particular cut of meat needs washed, I do that too. I'm not putting up meat that appears contaminated.

Now if you were not going to be able to wash the carcass for a few days, then that might be a different matter.
Additional data:
About 28 hours between the shot and the fridge. Shot her at about 5pm.
I rinsed her in a stream after I gutted her. Not sure if that was good or bad as the water was pretty murky.
I didn't get hose on her until the next evening.
The last 7 hours, she had a bag of ice in the body cavity.
Overnight the temps dipped down to the high 40's

I did nick the tenderloins when gutting her.

Thanks for the info. Live and learn.
Next time, I'll take a chance on the tenderloin.

Right now, I still have the smell of her guts in my mind and the thought of eating meat that was smeared with sh*t.... Can't do it.
Old 10-07-2011, 11:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BuellerBueller View Post

Right now, I still have the smell of her guts in my mind and the thought of eating meat that was smeared with sh*t.... Can't do it.
That's bound to happen with a bow or a gun. I'd wash it and freeze it. Later on down the road it will be good!
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Old 10-07-2011, 11:20 AM
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Clothes pin in your hunting pack, just to be safe. Then as soon as you get the deer home get a hose on it. No matter if it's 2am or not.

Hang it up, let it cool, a day or two later, butcher it, and freeze all of it.

Ya, you'll have to wait a week or so, from the original shot, to eat any of it, but the freezer and the stove will kill any bacteria you might be afraid of.
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Old 10-07-2011, 05:44 PM
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Don't waste any meat unless it's bloodshot or visibly messed up, the tenderloins are tasty
Old 10-07-2011, 06:02 PM
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How do you handle gut shot deer?

Man, that's a rough one.

finish it off, and go for the haunches and back strap.
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Old 10-07-2011, 06:11 PM
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Here in bama, while it is hanging after being skinned. You thoroughly rinse the deer inside and out with the water hose and proceed like it never happened. Now if it were the bladder, that is a different story.

As far a cooking it, I soak it in vinegar for a bit before marinading or cooking it. The vinegar takes the "gamey" taste of the adrenaline (caused by anything other than an instant death) out of the meat.
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Old 10-07-2011, 06:43 PM
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I'll clean the meat, wash down with a hose good.

Quarter the deer, seperate the good unaffected meat from the meat you're concerned with.

I put the good meat in ice and let it bleed out until I process it, usually within 2 days or so

The contaminated meat, after a thorough washing, I'll put in ice/water and let it set for a day, then I change the ice/water and continue to let it bleed out, then process after a day or so. If it smells, I'll toss it.

I generally don't gut my deer, I skin them and then pull the backstraps and quarter the deer. I do this not long after the kill (within a few hours at the most)

As above, soaking in vinegar works and also soaking in milk works too for the gamey taste! If you let the meat bleed out, as above, there won't be a gamey taste hardly at all.
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Old 10-07-2011, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffreyGlover View Post
Here in bama, while it is hanging after being skinned. You thoroughly rinse the deer inside and out with the water hose and proceed like it never happened. Now if it were the bladder, that is a different story.
Now that's something I never understood.

Barring an infection, Urine in an mammal's body is sterile.
If some sterile pee lands on the inside body cavity and is quickly rinsed off, what harm can come of it?

I've done that once or twice with my rabbits and rinsed off quickly and never had a problem.

Is it just a taste thing?
Please explain.
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Old 10-08-2011, 11:29 PM
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I've washed out lots of deer that had been gut shot, not all of them mine.
Never noticed any problems with taste on any of it.
I also just mainly trim around the trauma area on the meat and eat the rest.

I think I would be more worried about what might have been in that creekwater, you can't hardly trust any wild water anymore.
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:34 PM
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Quote:
If some sterile pee lands on the inside body cavity and is quickly rinsed off, what harm can come of it?
No harm at all. I know I'm in the minority, but a few deer pellets that get in the cavity during a quick field dress don't concern me at all either. You have to really work at trying to actually taint deer meat in my experience. I mean, doesn't everyone cook their meat so the bacteria is killed anyway?
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:08 PM
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Thanks all.

Just an update:

Had some backstrap steaks (more like medallions) last night.

It was a religious experience.

Half we soaked in brine, the other half we soaked in vinegar and water. Both were good, neither were gamey. The vinegar cuts tasted like sauerbraten but a bit stronger. We all preferred the saltwater cuts.
We sauteed some and grilled some. The sauteed was better.

Seriously, it was the best meal of my life. Hard to describe.
Something about all the work I put into my food plots over the past year, the kill, the hauling, the butchering, the fact that it was pure - antibiotic free, the thanks I received from my family.
MAN, what an experience!

Left me a bit sad for the man who spends his life in an office and has only ever obtained his sustenance via debit card.
Funny thing is that I was that guy 2 years ago

Anyway - getting a bit too philosophical for my own liking...
To say the least, this "survivalism thing" has been enriching.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BuellerBueller View Post
Thanks all.

Just an update:

Had some backstrap steaks (more like medallions) last night.

It was a religious experience.

Half we soaked in brine, the other half we soaked in vinegar and water. Both were good, neither were gamey. The vinegar cuts tasted like sauerbraten but a bit stronger. We all preferred the saltwater cuts.
We sauteed some and grilled some. The sauteed was better.

Seriously, it was the best meal of my life. Hard to describe.
Something about all the work I put into my food plots over the past year, the kill, the hauling, the butchering, the fact that it was pure - antibiotic free, the thanks I received from my family.
MAN, what an experience!

Left me a bit sad for the man who spends his life in an office and has only ever obtained his sustenance via debit card.
Funny thing is that I was that guy 2 years ago

Anyway - getting a bit too philosophical for my own liking...
To say the least, this "survivalism thing" has been enriching.
Sounds like you might be a Ted Nugent fan. ;-)

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Old 10-09-2011, 10:39 PM
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Had the same thing happen with a deer I helped field dress. The guy had shot it from about 200 yards with open sights and got it in the guts. We cleaned it within 2 hours and rinsed it as we cleaned. The tenderloins were great! Only the bloodshot meat did we dump.
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Old 10-28-2011, 01:23 PM
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Gut shot, urine, whatever else really doesnt matter. Use a few water bottles to clean the worst off in the field. Hose it off real good soon as possible and don't worry about it. Infections, trauma, lead, bone fragments, sticks, hair, do feel free to remove. Hang'er up for a few days weather permitting; cooler and ice for a few days weather not permitting. Remove tendon and silver skin, wrap properly, enjoy.
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