When to clean/field dress your bird - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 11:37 AM Thread Starter
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When to clean/field dress your bird

This has probably already been a topic, but I struggled finding it.

When should you clean or field dress your harvested bird?
Do you gut the bird in the field or is it ok to wait until you get home or at least back to the truck?

Help a noob out.

thanks
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 11:40 AM
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Re: When to clean/field dress your bird

I never field dress birds, I do immediately do field dress rabbits. I would never do it but some folks hang teir birds with the entrails in for days before cleaning them, they claim it makes them taste better. I age venison, not birds.



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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 12:15 PM
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Re: When to clean/field dress your bird

On a warm day I'll field dress the bird soon after it's down, but it's normally not necessary and I'll wait till I get home.

Johnís post reminded me of when I was a kid growing-up in Bucks County during the 70ís; we had a neighbor who always just let his birds hang outside without field dressing. He took them down and prepared them around Christmas time.
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 01:12 PM
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Re: When to clean/field dress your bird

I no longer field dress birds. Just take them home whole and breast them out there.
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 01:25 PM Thread Starter
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Re: When to clean/field dress your bird

Thanks Guys.
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 01:44 PM
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Re: When to clean/field dress your bird

I always wait to do them when I get home but make sure I did them that day. Anything that would not be eaten in a day or two got vacuum sealed and went into the freezer.

My ability to remember lyrics from songs of the 60's far exceed my ability to remember why I walked into the kitchen
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 06:26 PM
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Re: When to clean/field dress your bird

A number of years ago the PGC had a video available on aging meat. I was amazed at the time you can leave birds and mammals go before cleaning them. I remember in the case of the pheasant, they suggested leaving the entrails in the bird while aging! I was a little blown away. They said removing the entrails actually spread more bacteria than leaving them in the bird. If a bird was shot hard, then immediately clean and process. Also the temperature plays an important role in aging meat. Anything out of the high 40s probably not a good idea. From now on, you should be fine leaving them hang for days. Yum, yum

"The wildlife and it's habitat cannot speak for itself. So we must and we will." Teddy Roosevelt
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 07:00 PM
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Re: When to clean/field dress your bird

I have a friend that puts his birds in the crisper drawers of an old refridgerator for a week or more to age them before he cleans them. I told him, I would never eat game at his house. Just the thought of guts leaking digestive juices inside the bird takes away my appetite. Then with woodcock some the guts to make a sauce. Not me brother.



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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 07:36 PM
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Re: When to clean/field dress your bird

Quote:
Originally Posted by John S
Just the thought of guts leaking digestive juices inside the bird takes away my appetite.
John, you have a way with words. The way you put it, I just lost my appetite too.

"The wildlife and it's habitat cannot speak for itself. So we must and we will." Teddy Roosevelt
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 08:10 PM Thread Starter
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Re: When to clean/field dress your bird

Ok gotcha, bird with guts and digestive juices to the crisper.
I'll run that by my wife and get back to you...

Actually I know what her snarky reply will be
"Based on your past history as a bird hunter, my crisper is safe".
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