7 replies [Last post]
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Location: NJ
Joined: 06/22/2005
Posts: 1
field dressing....the bottom line

Hello all,
First post. Been hunting for a few years now, and haven't been successful yet. But I was close last year, so I've been trying to get down how to field dress a deer. I've read all the articles and checked out the diagrams, pictures, flow charts, etc. and I'm starting to feel the paralysis from analysis!
Can I sum up a basic understanding, and you all tell me if I'm missing or misunderstanding anything?

1- first cut from (around)genital area up to sternum. Just cut hide. Don't cut insides.
2- cut around anus and tie off (to prevent leakage).
3- cut up paunch, and take out insides (bladder(carefully), liver, heart, etc.)
4- reach up in rib area, cut diaphram and windpipe, and remove as much as possible.
5- prop open with stick, drag (w/ out getting dirt in cavity) out!

I know this is very simplistic, but I have a feeling that when I bag that first buck, I'm going to have trouble with the details, so I'm trying to make sure i've got the big things covered. Will this get it done? (I know some folks like to split the sternum, pelvis, etc, but I'm trying to follow the KISS principal).

Thanks everyone in advance.
-Bob

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Moderator
Location: Wa.
Joined: 03/31/2004
Posts: 1300
field dressing....the bottom line

I wouldn't be draging it with the cavity open.
Wash or wipe it out thoroughly.
The object is to get the meat cooled as soon as possible.
As soon as you get back to camp or home. Hang it. Skin it. Wash it down and wrap it to keep the flies and other pests out.
Once this is done you can leave it hang for a couple of days to tenderize the meat or take it to a butcher and they'll do it for you. For a minimal charge.
If your hunting in snow. Pack the cavity to keep it cool while tranporting.

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Moderator
Joined: 01/27/2002
Posts: 7916
field dressing....the bottom line

We posted an article on field dressing a deer a while back. You might find it helpful.

Field Dressing a Deer

For a complete index of all our articles, you can visit this page:
http://www.biggamehunt.net/articles/featured_articles.html

Offline
Location: Missouri/Arkansas
Joined: 08/21/2003
Posts: 891
field dressing....the bottom line

I normally dress them after I get them home. It is cold enough here during deer season that I can wait even several hours, although I try to have all deer gutted within 20 minutes of being killed. I hang them up by the neck, open the cavity, andstart from the top, so everything falls down into a bucket, and then at the bottom, I cut the rectal passage away and detach the last of the entrails. I tie off the top part of the esophagus in the upper throat with monofilament.

Offline
Location: Missouri/Arkansas
Joined: 08/21/2003
Posts: 891
field dressing....the bottom line

I have a lot of tools to use, I have several pairs of game shears and meat scissors, some cleavers, three different-sized hunting knives, a big spool of cheap monofilament line, and a block-and-tackle.

rambo's picture
Offline
Location: Winnipeg,MB
Joined: 10/16/2005
Posts: 102
field dressing....the bottom line

Me personaly I take my knife and slit its throat and drag it back to the farm. But the thing is Last deer i got it was -28 or so outside so I just hung it in the barn once i gutted and skinned it.

saskie's picture
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Moderator
Location: West Carleton, Ottawa, Canada
Joined: 12/23/2002
Posts: 1264
Re: field dressing....the bottom line
bobd wrote:
Hello all,
First post. Been hunting for a few years now, and haven't been successful yet. But I was close last year, so I've been trying to get down how to field dress a deer. I've read all the articles and checked out the diagrams, pictures, flow charts, etc. and I'm starting to feel the paralysis from analysis!
Can I sum up a basic understanding, and you all tell me if I'm missing or misunderstanding anything?

1- first cut from (around)genital area up to sternum. Just cut hide. Don't cut insides.
2- cut around anus and tie off (to prevent leakage).
3- cut up paunch, and take out insides (bladder(carefully), liver, heart, etc.)
4- reach up in rib area, cut diaphram and windpipe, and remove as much as possible.
5- prop open with stick, drag (w/ out getting dirt in cavity) out!

I know this is very simplistic, but I have a feeling that when I bag that first buck, I'm going to have trouble with the details, so I'm trying to make sure i've got the big things covered. Will this get it done? (I know some folks like to split the sternum, pelvis, etc, but I'm trying to follow the KISS principal).

Thanks everyone in advance.
-Bob

That'll get it done. The only real tip I have is to (if possible) hang it from a tree before opening it up - it helps.

Offline
Moderator
Location: Wa.
Joined: 03/31/2004
Posts: 1300
field dressing....the bottom line

I'm with Saskie.
It sounds like you've got it down.
All you need is the opportunity.
Good luck.

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