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Hanging deer how long?

Old 12-04-2005, 07:56 AM
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Default Hanging deer how long?

Have been deer hunting for fifteen years now and this year I finally decided to process it my self. But I maid the mistake of asking guys at work and not coming here first. They said that beef is always aged at least a week and you could do the same with deer, thought this made sense cause the butcherI used to go to said he only did deer one day a week and if you brought your deer in on thurdays the deer would hang till the next wendsday. But not sure if he left hide on or not. Killed my deer on monday and skinned it on tuesday. Hung it in a insulated garage with no heat,34-38 degrees. when cutting up my meat I lost about 25% of it at least due to it being dried out on the edges/outside. I know someone in here has to know how and what i did wrong, please help. oh ya almost forgot shot it with my knight big horn, first deer to get with ml, most of the time I am done with my bow by the time ml gets here.
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Old 12-04-2005, 08:41 AM
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Default RE: Hanging deer how long?

Well many will disagree with me, and where I live I could let the devil hang all winter and it would be frozen solid... I get the skin off the first day only because it is easier to get off a warm deer then a cold one. Besides it is down to below zero or close to it every night now. I would have to heat the garage to let a deer "cure" or as my old grandfather used to call it, let them "rot tender" a while.

An easy way to get the hide off is hang it from a VERY STRONG RAFTER OR POLE. The take a knife and start dressing the deer hide down off the carcass. Put a larger round rock under the hide and loop a strong rope around the hide and rock and hook that to the four wheeler. While someone VERY SLOWLY drives the four wheeler away, it will tear that hide off cleaner then a whistle, leaving no hair and a smooth fresh hide (easier to tan that way.. less work). All the second guy does is stands there with a very sharp knife and kind of guides the hide off and touches with the knife blade to spots that are holding tight. You can take a hide off a deer in a matter of minutes, there is no hair or dirt on it, and it is nice and clean.

After I get the hide off, I quarter the thing. I then let it hang only to firm up. Usually overnight or a day, not much longer then that. This also gives any blood in the veins a chance to run out also. Once it is firm, I take that deer and de-bone all the major muscle groups and then cut it into steaks and roast. Of course the backstraps are butterfly chops.. what else. And the stuff left over is ground to burger meat and made into Venison Salami and sticks.

So to answer your question, I let them hang about one day is all. I have never had a tuff or game tasting venison yet (other then one old swamp buck shot in full rut, many years ago. You could not even cook that rascal in the house he would stink it up so bad. He ended up all sausage). Maybe because of their diet it makes a difference.
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Old 12-04-2005, 09:45 AM
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Default RE: Hanging deer how long?

I skin mine as soon as possible and if it's a warm day I bone it out and put it in a frige I keep in the garage. I put down freezer paper on the racks to keep the meat clean and to keep blood from dripping in the frige. I usually leave it in there until the next day and then proceed to cut it up into steaks and roasts. If it's clold evough I'll just leave it hanging and bone it out the next day. I have let them hang for 2 days but usually just overnight.
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Old 12-04-2005, 11:27 AM
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Default RE: Hanging deer how long?

here in mississippi we don't get the advantage of the cold weather that you get in the northern country. (Now that i said it will be colder than a whitch's tit in a brass dra). But if it were to get cold enough to let a deer hang for a few weeks it would hang as long as the cold would last in my shop with the skin left on . When i get deer or hogs and it's still hot they go into a ice chest for as long as i can come up with ice. I leave the ice chest plug open so as the ice melts and the blood comes out in goes down the drain. I never let it soak in water I just keep the ice on it, I will let it stay in the ice chest for up to 3 weeks. And it keeps very well, the deer meat will not be as gamey as a fresh kill and the hogs down here are so strong that if you try to eat loin the day after you kill it you will swear it just crawed out of a hog waller.
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Old 12-04-2005, 11:42 AM
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Default RE: Hanging deer how long?

ORIGINAL: Hotburn76

Have been deer hunting for fifteen years now and this year I finally decided to process it my self. But I maid the mistake of asking guys at work and not coming here first. They said that beef is always aged at least a week and you could do the same with deer, thought this made sense cause the butcherI used to go to said he only did deer one day a week and if you brought your deer in on thurdays the deer would hang till the next wendsday. But not sure if he left hide on or not. Killed my deer on monday and skinned it on tuesday. Hung it in a insulated garage with no heat,34-38 degrees. when cutting up my meat I lost about 25% of it at least due to it being dried out on the edges/outside. I know someone in here has to know how and what i did wrong, please help. oh ya almost forgot shot it with my knight big horn, first deer to get with ml, most of the time I am done with my bow by the time ml gets here.
GET THE SKIN OFF RIGHT NOW!!, and let the meat cool ASAP!! If you leave the skin on and the meat remains warm for any time, bacteria will grow in the carcass and make the meat taste "gamey, or worse, become totally unfit for eating!

How long you let it hang AFTER it cools depends on the weather. If it is warm and humid (over 40 degrees F), hang time should be no more than a day, if that. If temperatures are below 35 or so F, it can hang for up to a week and still be OK, provided of course, that you got the meat cool quickly. By far the best-tasting venison I've ever produced myself was skinned, cut up, boned and frozen before darkon the same day it was killed. I abandoned all hanging after that!!

IF I kill a deer way the hell out back in the Turkey Mountains I always rub the carcass down with a 50-50 mixture of black pepper and salt as soon as it is gutted,skinned, and hnaging in a pinon tree. The salt inhibits bacteria grown, and the pepper keeps any and all flies off the meat, regardless of the temperature! If you have game bags, so much the better. Use the salt/pepper mixture before putting the meat in the bags!
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Old 12-04-2005, 11:50 AM
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Default RE: Hanging deer how long?

In a study done by the Colorado Division of Wildlife in 2001, it was determined that, unlike cattle, there is no advantage to hangingbig game carcasses for any length of time. Under ideal circumstances, it won't hurt anything - but you risk bacteria issues and other complications that can negatively affect the quality of the meat. So we butcher as soon as scheduling will allow - often the same day.
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Old 12-04-2005, 04:05 PM
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Default RE: Hanging deer how long?

Hotburn76,

For me and if I am processing it home, I guess I do the same thing my father and his grandfather do... depending on temperature - it hangs in the garage or woodshed for 3 days - at the end of 3 days it usually has a very thin kinda grissely coat over the tissue. I have know idea why they chose 3 days. I have myself have gone as long as a week.

When we get it home we do clean it up remove all the wound material both from the bullet and the cleaning, hang it by it's heals and let it drain. We have at times even wiped it down with luke warm water.

Then as long as the weather cooperates - not freezing hard and not above 40 degrees let it hang.

Whether you have to let it hang or not - I really do not know, but it seems easier to handle and process if it is set up a little bit.

Practice will be your guide

good luck

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Old 12-04-2005, 06:26 PM
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Default RE: Hanging deer how long?

thanks you guys for the info, I shot the deer i spoke of during the regular shotgun season, I will try again when the late ML season comes in. Also All the deer I have shot have been with a bow so the trama to the meat is little or none. but man the hornady sst really messed up alot of meat in the shoulder area. Do any of you go for neck shots because of this, or should i just get used to discarding the meat? This bp forum catagory seams like it has a real good group of regulars in it and am enjoying lots of reading
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Old 12-04-2005, 06:52 PM
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Default RE: Hanging deer how long?

ORIGINAL: Hotburn76

thanks you guys for the info, I shot the deer i spoke of during the regular shotgun season, I will try again when the late ML season comes in. Also All the deer I have shot have been with a bow so the trama to the meat is little or none. but man the hornady sst really messed up alot of meat in the shoulder area. Do any of you go for neck shots because of this, or should i just get used to discarding the meat? This bp forum catagory seams like it has a real good group of regulars in it and am enjoying lots of reading
congratulations on the deer. While granted a muzzleloader can mess up a little bit of meat, I personally only shoot for high percentage shots. I like the heart and lung area. When you shoot for the neck, you take a chance of missing some vital area. And since you have no follow up shot, you need to make sure the shot you take, plants them. So again, while a neck shot is fine, and I have made them, I still take high percentage shots to the heart and lung area. Throw away the blood meat. And be happy you have a lot more venison to eat.
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Old 12-05-2005, 07:30 PM
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Default RE: Hanging deer how long?

Thanks cayugad, Speaking of heart shots this one was blasted right threw the heart tearing it to shreds and the thing still ran sixty yards! Also what do you guys use to cut the deer bone? Thanks again!
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