How to field dress a deer

How to field dress a deer

It looks like he’s down, get up here and check and make sure. [Narrator]
When you’re approaching a deer that you’ve shot, you want to make sure the animal is
dead. You do not want to grab hold of a wounded
animal. [Roy]
I believe he’s dead. [Narrator]
Once that you’ve determined that it’s dead, tag the deer to make it a legal kill. After properly filling out the tag you can
attach it to the leg of the animal or you may have to save the head of the deer for
proof of sex so it makes sense to attach the tag to the ear or antlers. Once properly tagged, you’re ready to begin
field dressing. [Roy]
You got it? [Mike]
Yes, sir. [Roy]
And on a buck to make sure they’ve got enough skin left to make a shoulder mount with we
don’t want to cut him any higher than the sternum right here because they’re going to
need the hide behind the shoulders forward to make a shoulder mount. So you want to start at eh pelvic area, and
just cut down between the hams. Get to
where you can make an incision and come right up around his genitalia. And go ahead and get those out of the way. And you can just take those off and discard
them. And if you’ll just cut around those mammary
glands and get rid of that. [Narrator]
If you’re field dressing a doe, the process of removing the mammary glands is very similar
to removing the genitals of the buck. [Roy]
There you go. [Narrator]
Back on the buck we were working on, the process of carefully opening the abdomen continues. Something to keep in mind as you watch this
is, is that each year many hunters severely cut themselves or a fellow hunter while field
dressing. A few tips to remember include: make sure
you have a good hold on the knife, keep the blade pointed away from you and others and
cut away from your body. Take your time and let your partner know you’re
doing to avoid accidents. [Roy]
Take it up to the sternum. Now then go ahead and stop there. Since it’s a buck if it were going to be mounted,
you wouldn’t want to cut any further up than that but to get the intestines or the lungs
and heart out, you’re going to have to cut around the diaphragm and reach up in to get
them out. You can cut on up to about here and stop. Stand behind the shoulders with it. There you go, that’s plenty far. We’ll leave enough hide for the taxidermist. There you go. Stand on his legs and pull up on his tail. [Narrator]
You may have noticed that Mike has been wearing rubber gloves. There are a couple of reasons for this. First many deer carry ticks that begin to
migrate off the carcass as it cools. Wearing rubber gloves can help prevent the
ticks from infecting you with any disease they might carry. Secondly, if you had any cuts on your hands
or breaks in the skin, the gloves can help protect you against infection. [Roy]
He’s in pretty good shape. [Mike]
Yes he is. [Roy]
Be sure to get all the intestines out. And the next thing we want to do is pick him
up and drain him. And get all that blood out of there so it
doesn’t dry on the meat. Let’s turn him over and drain him out. [Narrator]
Notice how Mike has kept his hunter orange vest and cap on throughout this process. In some areas wearing hunting orange is required
but even where it’s not required, keeping your hunter orange on while field dressing
is an excellent idea so that you’re not mistaken for game.

4 Replies to “How to field dress a deer”

  1. I have never hunted before and I am looking to start this season… I've always shot both as a civilian and in the Army… I have a pretty good understanding of what needs to be done and how to start my own trails and errors… I need a little guidance on the field dressing part tho… do you call in the kill first? Do you only field dress and then take to a processor? What point are you allowed to remove the deers head? ( if you are keeping it)?
    And help is appreciated, thank you.

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