It is really hard for hunters to know if they’re finding their complete harvest back when the butcher hands more than their meat order. Some may well wonder, or even suspect, that they’re becoming brief-changed, as the quantity of meat they finish up with is considerably much less than the animal’s reside weight.
When the organs, hide, head, legs, and fat are removed, much less of the animal is going to the butcher, and when the meat is trimmed and deboned (as most hunters choose), it is decreased once more.
Study on for an notion of how a great deal meat to anticipate, plus some ideas to assist hunters enhance the high quality and yield of their harvest. Of course, the final weight will differ among species and person animals, but shot placement and suitable meat handling go a lengthy way to upping the meat that tends to make it to the table.
Yield, by the numbers
Hunter and wild-game butcher Wealthy Brochu has been cutting game for years, and has a superior notion about what to anticipate for wild game yields.
Brochu commonly finds moose offer the greatest percentage of meat. As a substantial, lean animal, hunters can generally finish up with 40 to 45% of the animal’s total weight, although bulls are normally leaner than cows.
Brochu sees deer in the middle for yield (normally about 25 to 30% of the total weight). They are relatively fatty, with most of the meat coming from the hind quarters, shoulders, and loins, and tiny meat on the front finish and rib location.
Brochu says bears yield the least meat, and suggests that no matter the size of the bear, the finish outcome is comparable, about 40 pounds. Larger bears are commonly a great deal fattier, so even a 200- to 250-pound bear will only net 40 to 50 pounds of meat when the thick layers of fat, strong bone structure, and heavy hide are removed.
Spring bears may well yield a slightly bigger percentage of meat than fall bears, as they have a great deal much less fat. Even a bear taken in mid to late August will be noticeably lighter than a bear of the similar age in late October, as they pack on fat in preparation for winter.
Luis Alves of Superior Foods in Thunder Bay suggests hunters clean up the broken location about the shot, and reduce out the “blood pockets” to enhance high quality and lessen wasted meat. The longer broken meat sits, the extra meat is wasted.
When producing sausage, Alves says adding 10% pork to the mix is a regular request from most hunters. Alves finds it keeps lean game meat moist, and reduces loss through smoking due to the lean game meat drying out.
Most hunters do not add pork to bear sausage, as the meat is not as lean as moose or deer and does not demand it.
Handling the harvest
Alves does not really feel hanging game meat longer than needed is advantageous, as wild game is quite lean and does not achieve the similar positive aspects as beef (aging as the fat dries).
Hanging a skinned animal longer than necessary wastes meat, as dried meat requirements to be trimmed off (with no fat covering, edible meat is lost). Hold the animal cool, skin it, clean as a great deal fat and hair off as attainable, then take it straight to the butcher.
With some know-how of what to anticipate, and suitable field care, hunters can assure they net the maximum quantity and finest high quality meat from their harvest.
Initially published in the Nov.-Dec 2016 problem of Ontario OUT of DOORS magazine.
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