Game you can't eat

Discussion in 'Hunting, Fishing & Gathering' started by Alphaholic, Jan 11, 2018.

  1. Alphaholic

    Alphaholic Tracker

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    Just out of curiosity, are there critters that are dangerous to eat? I have seen Steven Rinella eat a coyote, which i would be hesitant about, but he says it's safe. But are there things out there that carry diseases that can be transferred even after cooking? Not saying I am going to go out and try these for fun, just wondering if they can be put on the menu in an emergency situation. Things that come to mind that I would have serious concerns about would be armadillo or buzzard, not sure I would be interested even if they were safe but I imagine it would be an easier sell if I was starving.....
     
  2. hdlv

    hdlv Treen Machine Supporter

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    The most dangerous game.... but when the going gets real ruff folks have eaten that too.
     
  3. jasam

    jasam Scout

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    Armadillo? We used to eat those all the time.
     
  4. werewolf won

    werewolf won TANSTAAFL Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    What concerns me most are creatures that accumulate heavy metals, PCB’s and other industrial wastes. You can usually see if an animal is unhealthy by its behavior, fur condition, spots on the liver, parasites on it, worms etc. Chemical loads don’t always show obvious signs, and we do easily absorb them.

    I enjoy rabbit, but don’t eat wild ones.
     
  5. Pastor Chris

    Pastor Chris Keeper of the T.Darrah Tenkara Pass-Around Hobbyist Supporter Bushcraft Friend Hardwoodsman Bushclass II

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    Very interesting insight from you as always!

    My excuse for not eating wild rabbit is that they are too fast for me lol. But that is worth another thinking through.
     
  6. HeadyBrew

    HeadyBrew Supporter Supporter

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    Armadillo’s can carry leprosy and can spread it to humans during handling, preparation and if improperly cooked.

    What’s interesting is there isn’t any record of leprosy in the americas prior to the arrival of Europeans. So it would seem they actually caught it from us and became vectors.
     
  7. werewolf won

    werewolf won TANSTAAFL Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Rabbits carry a handful of nasty diseases that they can transmit to humans which is why I avoid them.

    Fish are big absorbers of heavy metals. Largemouth bass, eel, tuna, sharks are all apex predators in their environments and pick up metals faster than other finned creatures, as do other long lived fish like carp. An adult male can eat them safely, just don’t go crazy; a pregnant female and children would be wise to avoid them. Heavy metals etc have to be present to be absorbed too, a bass from clean waters is a safe fish for anyone—being sure the water is really clean is a whole other subject.
     
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  8. CoolBreeze135

    CoolBreeze135 Scholarly Woodsman Bushcraft Friend

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    Are wild rabbits particularly prone to bio-accumulation of contaminants?
     
  9. DirtmanDave

    DirtmanDave Supporter Supporter

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    The game to dangerous to eat is checkers. To hard to cook no matter how long you soak them and wat to tough to chew...you could break a tooth!
     
  10. HeadyBrew

    HeadyBrew Supporter Supporter

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    While I enjoy venison and other wild game I’ve tried, I’m not personally a hunter so my knowledge is pretty limited only to the biology degree I have. I can only speak in general terms. So take it with a grain of salt from that perspective. If you’re an experienced hunter, then I assume you know what sorts of virus/chemicals/contaminants are in your areas and what is safe.

    Rabies virus is inactivated by cooking, but I’d personally try to avoid as much as possible eating the most common animals to carry it - raccoons, bats, foxes, wild/feral dogs (we’re talking emergency scenarios after all).

    Chronic wasting disease in deer is caused by prions similar to mad cow and isn’t destroyed by cooking so I would not eat any deer that looked even slightly unthrifty if I knew I was in an area it was present.
     
  11. werewolf won

    werewolf won TANSTAAFL Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    No but they do carry a handful of problems that can be transmitted to us.
     
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  12. field-expedient

    field-expedient Misfit Supporter Bushclass II

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    the liver of polar bears can have toxic levels of vitamin A
     
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  13. kaywoodie

    kaywoodie Scout

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    When hunting with neophytes, we always refer to the tenderloins (elk, deer, etc) as " poison glands", and we happily dispose of them for the folks! ;)
     
  14. halfmoon

    halfmoon Tracker

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    I was once told by a crusty ole gent that he would eat anything that
    Would make a bowel movement , from the looks of him he wasn't lying
     
  15. Mitch Ray

    Mitch Ray Guide

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    The answer is, it depends.

    Some folks have already pointed out how aquatic apex predators are especially susceptible to bioaccumulation and biomagnification of certain toxins. You can east most of them, but the location and how often really matters.

    Omnivores and carnivores tend to carry more parasites (trichinella, etc.) but that can usually be dealt with through thorough cooking. Rabbits can carry tuleremia, hogs can carry brucellosis, mammals can carry rabies, armadillos can carry leprosy, and the list goes on. It's best to be careful when field dressing, butchering, and cooking.

    @HeadyBrew those prion diseases are terrifying. Kinda crazy how a malformed protein can wreak that kind of havoc.
     
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  16. TomC

    TomC Tracker

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    Pardon my ignorance. What are checkers? The animal not the board game.
     
  17. werewolf won

    werewolf won TANSTAAFL Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    They say never eat things with sharp teeth for a reason. Consider a rabbit can only absorb so many toxins before it dies. What happened when a sharp toothed critter eats the dead rabbit? It absorbs those toxins. So, let’s call the sharp tooth a coyote. Said coyote has its own load of toxin from just living in the same environment as the rabbit plus the extra from the rabbit meal; and a coyote might eat a rabbit, or more, per day its entire life. Being a bigger creature the coyote can absorb a lot more toxin load before dying. If we eat a rabbit we get only the toxin it might have accumulated if we eat the coyote we get every rabbit toxin it has ever consumed. We are efficient at passing a lot of unusable stuff through our systems, but we are just as good at storing stuff, and not just the good stuff, too.
     
  18. backlasher

    backlasher Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    A sign on the bay I like to fish. 100_4078.JPG
     
  19. Mitch Ray

    Mitch Ray Guide

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    These kind of things make me wish there was a "dislike" button.
     
  20. DirtmanDave

    DirtmanDave Supporter Supporter

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    Checkers... It's a board game. To tough to eat. Could break a tooth.:14:
     
  21. Park Swan

    Park Swan Maker Vendor

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    I do wonder about the coyotes and similar. Most of what I hear is that people don't want to try it, very little do I hear a reason, actually in this thread are some of the first reasons I've seen. I don't know if it's true or not that they accumulate nasty stuff that will pass on to us. Chickens did through and eat cow poop but they make a fine meal as their bodies are able to handle bacteria that ours aren't. If/when I kill my first coyote I'll be trying the meat assuming it seems like a healthy enough animal and doesn't live in a city/town.
     
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  22. wingnuts

    wingnuts Hunter/Gatherer Provider/Protector Supporter

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    According to testing there are NO safe lakes in NJ!
     
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  23. werewolf won

    werewolf won TANSTAAFL Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    They say the same about Mass waters. I believe being down wind of the iron smelters for all the years they were in business left us with a heavy mercury load, NJ and most of the east coast may have the same issue. Locally I also suffer with the results of huge electronic manufactures who dumped PCB’s into the wilderness for years unchecked.
     
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  24. Lichen

    Lichen Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Years ago, a friend's father almost died from tularemia from cleaning rabbits. Since then, I've always worn latex gloves when cleaning them. A couple of times I've shot a cottontail that was so covered in ticks that I just left if for the buzzards.
     
  25. pab1

    pab1 Supporter Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    I wear gloves when cleaning them also.
     
  26. wingnuts

    wingnuts Hunter/Gatherer Provider/Protector Supporter

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    I wasn’t aware of all the problems with rabbits! I haven’t shot a bunny in quite some time! Since the doggies died! We also have pcbs and all the mercury you have as well as the heavy metals mentioned! Sad what has happened.
     
  27. Ahnkochee

    Ahnkochee Bushmaster

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    I am not Jewish either in blood or religion but I am a student of the Bible and can see the wisdom in the Mosaic law's dietary restrictions even though I don't follow them. Here are a few examples:

    Mammals
     “Tell the Israelites, ‘These are the living creatures of the earth that you may eat:  Every animal that has a split hoof and a cleft in its hooves and that chews the cud may be eaten.
    “‘But you must not eat these animals that chew the cud or have a split hoof: the camel, which chews the cud but does not have a split hoof. It is unclean for you.  Also the rock badger, because it chews the cud but does not have a split hoof. It is unclean for you.  Also the hare, because it chews the cud but does not have a split hoof. It is unclean for you. Also the pig, because it has a split hoof and a cleft in the hoof but does not chew the cud. It is unclean for you.  You must not eat any of their flesh or touch their dead body. They are unclean for you." Leviticus 11:2-8 Deer, cattle, goat, sheep, antelope, etc. all split hooved cud chewers were clean.

    Sea Creatures
     “‘This is what you may eat of everything in the waters: Anything in the waters that has fins and scales, whether in the seas or in the rivers, it you may eat.  But anything in the seas and in the rivers that has no fins and scales, among all the swarming creatures and of every other living creature that is in the waters, it is a loathsome thing for you.  Yes, they should be loathsome to you, and you must not eat any of their flesh and you must loathe their carcasses.  Everything in the waters that has no fins and scales is a loathsome thing to you." Leviticus 11:9-12 No catfish, eel, or shellfish of any kind allowed for consumption.

    Flying Creatures (Birds, Bats, etc.)
    “‘These are the flying creatures that you are to loathe; they should not be eaten, for they are loathsome: the eagle, the osprey, the black vulture, the red kite and every kind of black kite, every kind of raven,  the ostrich, the owl, the gull, every kind of falcon,  the little owl, the cormorant, the long-eared owl,  the swan, the pelican, the vulture,  the stork, every kind of heron, the hoopoe, and the bat.  Every winged swarming creature that goes on all fours is something loathsome to you."
    Leviticus 11:13-20 No carrion eaters. I believe ducks and geese were included with the swan so unclean. Chickens, quail, sparrows, doves, pigeons, basically seed eating birds with a crop (organ) were clean.

    Insects
    “‘Of the winged swarming creatures that move on all fours, you may eat only those that have jointed legs above their feet for leaping on the ground.  Of these you may eat: various kinds of migratory locusts, other edible locusts, crickets, and grasshoppers.  All other winged swarming creatures with four legs are something loathsome to you." Leviticus 11:21-23 Just the hoppers were clean.

    Rodents, Reptiles, Amphibians, etc.
     “‘These are the swarming creatures of the earth that are unclean to you: the mole rat, the mouse, every kind of lizard,  the gecko, the large lizard, the newt, the sand lizard, and the chameleon. These swarming creatures are unclean to you."
    Leviticus 11:29-31

    No reason was given why these animals were unclean and to be avoided but millennias later it was discovered that these "unclean" animals were disease carriers.

    Dietary Restrictions for Christian Lifted by Divine Decree
    "The next day as they were continuing on their journey and were approaching the city, Peter went up to the housetop about the sixth hour to pray.  But he became very hungry and wanted to eat. While they were preparing the meal, he fell into a trance  and saw heaven opened and something descending like a great linen sheet being let down by its four corners on the earth;  and in it were all sorts of four-footed animals and reptiles of the earth and birds of heaven.  Then a voice said to him: “Get up, Peter, slaughter and eat!”  But Peter said: “Not at all, Lord, because I have never eaten anything defiled and unclean.”  And the voice spoke again to him, the second time: “Stop calling defiled the things God has cleansed.” Acts 10:9-15

    "Therefore, my decision is not to trouble those from the nations who are turning to God,  but to write them to abstain from things polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from what is strangled, and from blood" Acts 15:19,20

    Basically to a Christian every animal is clean to eat as long as it hasn't been first offered to an idol (false god) for sacrifice, or it's not strangled (no neck snare caught animals I'd think), and no blood so properly bled and blood disposed of.
    And no hanky-panky!

    I'm glad I'm not restricted to a kosher diet. I love shellfish, catfish, and eel too much! Eating blood always a gross thought to me. Glad I'm not a vampire.

    Here in Hawai'i most will not eat any Fugu or pufferfish of any kind except the most daring like my father in law. I refuse to try his Fugu soup. I know on Mainland east coast many eat "Sea Squab" aka pufferfish though I don't believe they are as toxic as the Pacific varieties. Several species of fish their eggs are toxic to humans I believe gar, and cabezon eggs are just 2 of many that should be avoided. Here in the islands there are many fish that are avoided due to ciguatera toxin build up in their flesh. One fish that we all avoid like a plague is the Blue Argus Grouper aka Ro'i. They are an invasive species here but in their native habitat in French Polynesia they are clean and considered a delicacy.
     
  28. wrath0r

    wrath0r Supporter Supporter

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    This day and age, you have to be careful what water source you eat fish from for the same reasons.
     
  29. tcb

    tcb Tracker

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    Well so much for organic critters
     
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  30. boomchakabowwow

    boomchakabowwow Guide

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    Shooting and eating cottontail is a good time. I cook them well, all the way thru.
     
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  31. Wasp

    Wasp We are GO for Sting! Supporter

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    Fish and game if its not cooked well and has parasites.
     
  32. Wasp

    Wasp We are GO for Sting! Supporter

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    About three years ago the Exxon pipeline broke near me in Mayflower AR. People fish for catfish and everything else right where the main dump for the spill was every day. They never finished cleaning it (long story) and it was "sands oil" which doesn't just sit on top, it floats in clumps on the bottom.
     
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  33. svh

    svh Supporter Supporter

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    I've always heard/read, that on the North American continent, if it has "Fins, Feathers or Fur", it s edible. Now weather or not you want to eat it outside of a survival situation, is another question.
     
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  34. zelph

    zelph Guide

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    Ever wonder about buffalo liver?

     
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  35. Moe M.

    Moe M. Supporter Supporter

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    Call me simple, but in some ways I believe that ignorance can be bliss, back when I was just big enough to mount and shoot a .22RF. rifle and find my way around local woods I hunted small game and upland birds, most of the game I harvested was Eastern Gray Squirrels and cotton tails, on occasion a Partridge or Pheasant would find it's way into my game bag, my folks kept a well stocked hen house, and they usually bought beef and pork from local farmers, and we had a half acre victory garden that pretty much kept us in fresh and canned veggies most of the year round.
    My earliest recollection of my Dad and Grandfather fishing was at a local small town body of water that was too small to call a lake and too big qualify as a pond, back then we just had bait casting reels, even the best were crude compared to today, I never could get the hang of using them without causing a huge explosion of braded fishing line, at five yrs. old I really considered being taken fishing with them as a punishment for some sin that I had somehow committed without knowing it.
    My point here is that I've been a life long hunter and fisherman, and I eat what I harvest, I've eaten most any kind of small and larger game, fish, and seafood found in the lower 48, ate meat and produce from local growers, not once did I ever consider any of the health hazards discussed above, I just didn't know about them until much later in life.
    Then there the other dangers in foods that the scientific and medical communities have invented for us, red meat is bad for us, pork and chicken ain't all that great for us either, fish should be avoided because of heavy metals and toxins in our fresh and ocean waters, eggs and butter will clog your pipes, dairy products will give you all sorts of serious illnesses, among them heart problems and cancer, and lets not forget GMO's and pesticides.
    As a kid I drank water from local streams and more than a few garden hoses, rode my bike and roller skated on the sidewalk without a helmet, rode in the back of my Dad's pickup and my Mom's car without seat belts, they never owed a kids car seat, It's a real mystery to me how I lived this long not knowing about all those things in this world that some folks say will kill me.
     
  36. Capin JRo

    Capin JRo Scout

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    Really anything from Parker Brothers you should not eat!
     
  37. Nakadnu

    Nakadnu OBSERVER Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Prions, You beat me to it.
    https://www.cdc.gov/prions/index.html
     
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  38. 66drifter

    66drifter Guide

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    'taint GAME iffin ya can't eat it

    justa critter

    'taint water iffin ya can't drink it

    just effluent...
     
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  39. NoBrakesRacing

    NoBrakesRacing Scout

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    Where is that in Texas? So that I don't plan a fishing trip there.

    Thanks
     
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  40. hunter63

    hunter63 In Memorium

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    If I don't intend on eating game I don't hunt it or kill it.

    Varmint and vermin ...all bets are off.
     
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  41. HeadyBrew

    HeadyBrew Supporter Supporter

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    Thing is, there very likely was less risk when you were a boy. Without getting too far off topic, many of the contaminants present nowadays and the prevelence of certain diseases are a direct result of “man’s” actions through pollution (industrial, farm runoff, etc) and certain game “management” (elimination of apex predators like wolves that would control game populations and weed out the sick) practices that let some diseases spread.

    It’s not like heavy metals were always present in fish populations and we just didn’t know. Most of those heavy metals got there cause we put them there.

    I believe chronic wasting disease was first identified in captive deer populations and then spread to wild herds.

    My point being, I don’t think it was a case of “ignorance was bliss” but more a case of these things just weren’t as prevalent back in your day (honestly not sure how old you are, but just trying to make a point).
     
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  42. zelph

    zelph Guide

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    animals with "mange" are not palatable :-( scarcely edible ;-)
     
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  43. Zunga

    Zunga Bushmaster

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    Mud shark and likely other shark as well. Meat can be hi in mercury. Eat now! Go crazy later. Bad trade! Annoying really. Mud shark deep fried and breaded tastes like cod.
     
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  44. DavidJAFO

    DavidJAFO Guide

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    "Remember, no matter where you go, there you are."
    hello,
    @Alphaholic I was going to suggest 'Monopoly' (Game) I'll get me coat sorry folks couldn't resist. :8: Carrion eaters of the Corvid family often found in British woodlands, these came to mind as we had this argument many years ago. The discussion started over British birds found in our woodlands & the Blackbird came to mind taken from the nursery rhyme "Sing a song of Sixpence"
    "Sing a song of sixpence
    A pocket full of rye,
    Four & twenty blackbirds
    Baked in a pie.. When the pie was opened
    The birds began to sing;
    Wasn't that a dainty dish,
    To set before the king."
    *The alternative verse was four and twenty Naughty Boys..


    A quick rule of thumb I was taught is, that you can eat anything on land with fur or feathers, as long as it is properly prepared & cooked thoroughly to kill bacteria & other pathogens that would make us sick.
    Regards
    David



     
  45. tamalpias

    tamalpias Tracker

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    In general don’t eat sick looking animals. Always carry examination gloves while in the field and use them when checking your game animal. When in doubt call your local department of fish and wildlife for any common diseases that are carried by the game quarry you are going after and they will gladly fill you in. If you are doing it recreationally then do your homework. In survival you can only go a few days without food and starvation will kill you long before any disease will so cook thouroughly. This is not rocket science, if people die from eating diseased animals you’d hear about it in the news but you don’t. You hear more about people dying from eating wild mushrooms because every year in my area some Asian family would die from it.
     
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  46. Donald Devall

    Donald Devall Scout

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    Interesting thread for sure.

    I’m surprised no one has mentioned wild boar? Obviously on the whole they are safe to eat as thousands of them are hunted and eaten every day, but I know they have been known to carry Swine...something starting with a B... and I’d imagine other assorted nasties.

    Shame about armadillos... being slow and nearly blind they are about the most catchable thing in the woods.
     
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  47. Mitch Ray

    Mitch Ray Guide

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    I mentioned hogs and brucellosis in post #15
     
  48. backlasher

    backlasher Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    It's Christmas Bay. It's very close to San Luis Pass between Galveston Island and Freeport. Since this whole area has a bunch of chemical and oil refineries, eating fish caught anywhere around here is a gamble.
     
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  49. Birdman

    Birdman Guide

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    Rodents and cats can carry Bubonic Plague. I know there have been cases in California and in Oregon. Doesnt keep me from squirrel hunting, just have to be cautious and careful during handling.
     
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  50. Zunga

    Zunga Bushmaster

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    This has nothing to do with game. It can kill you right quick. So im going to mention it anyway! There are creeks in highly localized areas here that go underground. They pass thru natural deposits of something poisonous. I want to say arsenic. But I can't honestly remember. I was labor on a work site. We were told to not under any conditions use the water for anything. The home owner was in the process of installing fancy equipment to make the water clean. They also put in pipe where ever the creek surfaced. To prevent animals and the unwary from drinking it.
     
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