how to clean game birds

If the weather is warm, bring along an ice chest with freezer packs in it. Whether you pluck or skin your birds depends partly on the kind of bird you have shot, and partly on personal preference.

Care in the Field and in Transport

Be prepared for the hunt.

  • It’s important to have a well-edged hunting knife, a steel or whetstone, nylon or light rope, plastic bags, paper towels or clean cloths, and an ice-filled cooler.

Observe game laws when hunting, moving, and storing wild animals.

Field dress the bird promptly.

  • As soon as you can, remove the crop’s entrails because if you don’t, the grain may ferment.
  • The heart and liver may be saved for giblets. To keep them fresh and chilled, store them in a plastic bag on ice.
  • Attach an identifying mark to the bird in accordance with state game regulations.
  • The birds may be plucked or skinned in the field. Carry a plastic bag to store the feathers if you decide to pluck the birds.

Quickly cool the carcass to preserve the bird’s quality and flavor. A temperature above 40 degrees Fahrenheit is meat’s worst enemy.

  • Using a paper towel or clean cloth, clean out the cavity. Snow and grass will contaminate the carcass, so avoid using them.
  • Place the bird in a well-ventilated area and hang it or lay it there to allow air to circulate inside the carcass.
  • When it’s hot outside, put each bird in a plastic bag and refrigerate.
  • Do not pile warm birds in a mass.
  • Keep the birds out of direct sunlight in a cooler or ice chest.

Keep the birds cool during transport.

  • The best place to keep birds is in an ice-filled cooler. If this isn’t feasible, place the birds on the floor or back seat of the car and maintain good ventilation.
  • Because the enclosed space in the trunk prevents the birds’ heat from escaping, do not transport them there.

Shoot for the Sky

If handled carefully at every stage, game birds present a challenge to hunters and the reward of a delectable meal at the table. Similar to domestic birds, game birds have a variety of unique flavors and are great sources of protein. The age and species of the birds affect the amount of fat and calories in them.

If wild game birds are handled incorrectly, they could get contaminated with bacteria or stomach juices. The meat may start to smell and taste off, and you run the risk of getting sick from eating it. When hunting, storing, and preparing food, keep in mind the following handling advice for the best possible quality.

Cleaning Game Birds Steps

Step 1

Trim the skin with caution from the breast’s base to the vent. To prevent severing any organs, cut from front to back while keeping the blade parallel to the body cavity wall. Remove the head.

Step 2

All internal organs and the vent should be removed using your fingers and/or a knife. The lungs and kidneys must be removed because they are firmly fixed to the back wall of the body. Take out the trachea, esophagus, and crop from the nape of the neck.

Step 3

Using a cloth or paper towels, thoroughly clean the interior of the bird. The body cavity may be cleaned out with clean water, but only if the corpse is completely dried afterward.


How long after shooting a pheasant should you clean it?

The JMBZ71 Pheasant Quick-Clean The warmer the bird, the easier this method is to perform. I’ve quick-cleaned many birds 3 or 4 hours after the kill but it works best if you can quick-clean it within a couple of hours.

Should you wash pheasant?

Water becomes your friend when you are ready to cook or freeze your birds. Only then do you want to rinse or brine your pheasants or quail – and even then many people frown on that. I actually prefer the flavor of a pheasant that’s only been wiped clean with a damp cloth.

How should you cook game birds?

Break down the pheasant or other gamebird into pieces (two breast pieces, two thighs and two lower legs) for grilling, marinate in your favorite sauce or mix (try Walton’s Butter Garlic Marinade), let the meat sit for a couple of hours, season with a spice blend or sauce, and grill to perfection.

How do you gut a game bird?

Insert two fingers all the ay into the chest cavity; reach forward until you reach the heart. Grab hold and pull the guts back out of the bird. After the initial pull, put your fingers back in and make sure you got everything out. Then scrape the lungs away from the back of the bird.