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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
One thing Im not too sure of and hope some can help. I have seen deer go 4 hours in near 90 degree weather during bow season before they were cleaned. From tracking, to hauling and loading, to paradeing and finally cleaned. I know the bacteria count rises the longer it goes without cooling but there are no hard rules to really follow. How long can the guts stay in before processing and to what temperatures, what to do to any meat that may have gotten stomach contents on it etc etc. Im sure its best to throw contaminated meat away but cant it be washed and made edible? I know of some who havent found deer till the next day and still consumed it but the weather was cold. I wish there was more info on these circumstances.
 

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I've been lucky to always have hunted deer and cold climates, so, if one had to be found the morning after the kill, it was always ok and good to eat. On the other hand, anyone who kills a deer and retrieves it right away should gut it immediately regardless of where he or she lives or whatever the temperature. Not doing that is irresponsible and disrespectful to the deer. Also, in many states, including my home state of Montana, it is illegal to waste game, and like breaking any law, ignorance is no excuse. Every hunter needs to know the basics BEFORE even entering the woods, and how to care for the meat of game animals is part of the preparation package.
To answer one of your questions specifically, once meat has gone bad, there is NO amount of washing or cleaning that will restore it. On the other hand, if good meat gets dirty (stomach contents, or other) it can be washed with cold water and then dried with paper towels, etc. The biggest contributors to meat spoilage are heat, time, dirt and moisture. The more of those things that are present, the faster the bacteria grows and the faster the meat deteriorates.
 

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I transported my daughters road kill deer about a half an hour because I didnt feel right about dressing it along the major roadway, and it had been down for about 45 minutes prior to my arrival. all entrails were intact upon field dressing. And outside of the odor during transport(in an enclosed van with windows down), was not at all bad during the process. Must have been the cold. she is hanging in the garage right now and for a car hit deer, really looks great.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I realize meat that has turned cant be washed and made edible. I was referring to meat that has entral contents on it. Im not asking because Im new to hunting, I actually killed an 8 point Saturday in Camp Blanding. I was simply looking for other opinions on the matter. You hear about e-coli scares from supposedly nicking the intestines and grinding the contents with the meat which I can understand. But if it gets all over the meat and is washed off well it should be ok is what I think you are saying.
 

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The posibility of gut shot deer is always a posibility with anyone who bowhunts. if proper care is taken EColi is not or sould not be of great concern. it the intestinal tract has been breeched and the contents are present in the body cavity a thourgh wash down after dressing will take care of most of the problem. completely cooking you deer will take care of the rest. most EColi outbreacks occur because of improper handling and cooking of food.
 

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4 hours with the skin on and guts in isn't an issue. Just cut away meat near the entry and exit wounds.

That said, the biggest oldest buck will skin much much easier within the first hour and the faster you get the blood out and meat cool (in a meat locker or icechest) the less gamey the meat will be. So take a good shot and keep the parade short.
 

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On the other hand, anyone who kills a deer and retrieves it right away should gut it immediately regardless of where he or she lives or whatever the temperature. Not doing that is irresponsible and disrespectful to the deer.
I totally disagree with this. Never gutted one in the woods. If it is going straight to the cleaning rack then what is the point. All the waste goes in one gut buck to the river. Generally shot to icechest is 2 hours.
 

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I totally disagree with this. Never gutted one in the woods. If it is going straight to the cleaning rack then what is the point. All the waste goes in one gut buck to the river. Generally shot to icechest is 2 hours.
The point is that Bacteria begins immediately Risking meat contamination,,,
the quicker the deers cavity is empty the better.
Any Butcher will tell you the same thing, that's why they only kill animals they are prepared to dress immediately.
 

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The point is that Bacteria begins immediately Risking meat contamination,,,
the quicker the deers cavity is empty the better.
Any Butcher will tell you the same thing, that's why they only kill animals they are prepared to dress immediately.

True. Disrespect is just a hard word to swallow.

That is why I try to only take high quality shots for a quick recovery, and clean the animal as soon as I can get it to a cleaning rack. Dragging an animal 20 yards and a 10 minute 4 wheeler ride to the cleaning rack doesn't disrespect a deer.

I would venture to say that my carcass on the rack skinned out and sprayed off with a water hose is about as clean as it can get. Rimming out a butthole in the middle of the woods doesn't sound too sanitary to me.

To each his own I guess
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have the upmost respect for the animal and also would rather wait to clean it where I have acess to water, paper towels, better light etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I looked at alot of you-tubes on deer cleaning. Didnt really learn much but stumbled on the butt out tools usage. It sure looks easy pushing to the handle, twisting till its tight and pulling out slowly. 12 inches of butt tract then you tie it off and cut it free. Ill take cleaning a poopy deer over a poopy diaper anyday.
 
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