Whenever someone sets out for a hunting trip, then the goals would be at least to end up successful on the trip. Let us assume you just bagged your first deer while hunting. You have to think about the steps to take in order to prepare the deer. You will need the right tools to ensure that the process is done correctly and easily. Do not worry if you have not done this before, as it is an easy process to learn. We get to look at some of the steps you have to take when butchering the deer after the kill.
What You Will Need
- A Set of sharp knives
- Hack saw
1. Field dressing stage
This is commonly the first step that comes after you have managed to shoot and kill the deer. It is always great to make sure that the deer is dead before you can start dressing. Sometimes you might find some people who would start slicing the deer’s throat when it is not dead. Of course, this could lead to just inflicting more pain to the deer. If you see there is some sign of life, simply shoot it point blank, so that it dies faster with no much pain. Even if you are going to skin it, killing it should be done in a humane way.
So what is field dressing? That would be the question on most people’s minds. They would want to be sure that it is something that they can do. The process of field dressing is all about removing the different innards of the deer. It is recommended that you do it on the spot before you can start the deer transportation.
When it comes to field dressing, it is recommended that you get to remove the windpipe, the heart, liver, guts, and lungs. It is still advisable that you do not get too much of the deer hair into the meat while field dressing.
This video should show you a few tips important to carry out the field dressing process.
2. Hang the deer
Now that you have transported your kill to home, it is time for the next step. You would have to hang it up as soon as you get home. It is common to have some people recommend hanging it with the head down or with the head up. It is mostly a matter of preference, but with the head down is commonly popular. Hanging the deer should give you an easier time to do things such as skinning and get the carcass easily bleed out. We both know that at this point the deer’s heart is not pumping any blood, so gravity could offer a lot in terms of bleeding the deer.
It is still advisable that you get to cut the rib cage to help with aerating the meat. You could use a hack saw for easy cutting so that you do not spend so much effort making the cut. Still at this stage, it would be appropriate if you can give the carcass a thorough rinse. The idea is to remove blood, debris, and hair from the inside of your hung deer. The rinsing also helps with cooling the meat in any case there was some heat remaining inside it.
With the deer up in the air hanging, this is another perfect opportunity for the hunter to skin it. If you are going to remove the hide, it is crucial to have the right set of sharp knives. You should also know how to use the knives so that you do not end up having injuries at the end of the skinning process. Some people also tend to peel a lot of meat with the hide. You have to do it right and ensure only the hide is removed without wasting your meat.
While you are skinning, it is still the perfect time for you to remove the four feet at the ankles, remove the tail and the head. You might find that your hacksaw is still important to cut through the tough joints of the deer.
With the hide removed, it is time that you gave the carcass another thorough cleaning. The aim is to remove any remaining hair from the skinning process and blood too. If these two are not cleaned, the result is that you end up with a meat with a disagreeable flavor most of the time. After all that hard work of hunting the deer, it should not go to waste at all.
Is it your first time skinning a deer? Do not worry, as the video below should give you some insights on how to do it perfectly.
4. Aging your deer meat
Aging of the deer meat could easily be done by anyone so long you know what you are doing. It is recommended that you age the meat for at least three days and go to up to a week whenever possible. Well, you do not have to keep aging it past a week. It is advisable that at this point, you get to keep the meat close to or even below 40-degree Fahrenheit so that it ages properly. This temperature range is crucial to prevent the meat from spoiling.
Sometimes you might notice some form of mold on the meat after a few days. Most of the time, instinct would kick in stating that the deer is going bad. It is not always a sign of spoilage, you could wipe down the mold with vinegar and it will be all good. Simply make sure that you restrict moisture as much as possible from getting into the deer.
5. Wrapping the venison
After the aging process, your meat should be reading for cutting and freezing. Before you can freeze, you would have to wrap it first. The clean carcass should easily be cut into different pieces with a knife or a hacksaw. Make sure that your hacksaw and knives are clean and sharp. Sharp tools always make it easy for cutting the meat into preferred sizes.
Just like that, you can see how easy it is for you to end up with the best deer butchering process. If you get to follow the mentioned steps above, it should be easy for you to end up with the best deer meat ready for you to enjoy. In the end, you would always feel your efforts as a hunter as well appreciated. There could be other multiple ways to deal with a deer after a kill, but this one is by far the simplest.