Before going on with this post, I want to say something about our humanity. We wouldn't exist as part of today's ecosystem had we not lived as predators for the last 200,000 years. Our omnivorous way of life along with our instinct to hunt has brought us to where we are today. Since the invent of agriculture (around 12,000 years ago), we lost quite a bit of our hunter gatherer ways, though there seems to be a resurgence in ancestral wisdom.
This post is in no way or form intended to offend those who have chosen to eat a solely plant based diet. You have your reasons and I am sure they're great. I've chosen to continue eating meat, but I would like to know where that protein comes from... the best way to truly know is to harvest animals yourself.
How does one get onto the world of hunting?
The question of ethics when we talk about hunting is often misunderstood. Hunters can be seen as this sort of clan, or brotherhood of backwoods animal killers only looking for selfies with their biggest "trophy" kill. The fact is that there are many different types of hunters out there and did you know that they play a really big part in nature preservation? They typically know more about the animals they hunt and their habitats than those who do not hunt.
Along with the preservation of nature and knowing the biology of the animals they hunt, they must be prepared to harvest their meat in such a way that it stays safe for consumption. After taking the life of an animal, the hunter needs to go through a process called "field dressing".
Field dressing is the process of removing the internal organs of hunted game, and is a necessary step in preserving meat from animals harvested in the wild. Field dressing must be done as soon as possible in order to ensure rapid body heat loss, and prevent bacteria from growing on the surface of the carcass. Field dressing helps maintain the overall quality of the meat. It also makes it considerably easier for a hunter to carry larger game from the hunt area. -wikipedia
I wasn't raised by a hunting family.
Just like everything else in life, if you find a mentor you will learn what you want to learn with so much more ease than trying to figure it all out on your own. When someone can show you the ropes you can grow faster.
I am impatient and not really in a place where I can find a hunting teacher, right now... sure it may be an excuse more than anything else but I am working all week in New York City and spending time with my family on the weekends this winter. This will have to be a goal for 2020!
December 23 2019:
When I drove passed a dead squirrel, I saw an oportunity to teach myself a little something about field dressing. When all esle fells, there's always that youtube or Dtube university to rely on. If anything, as long as I'd learn something, that squirrel wouldn't have died in vain.
I decided to save you from most of the gory details, but I can tell you that skinning a squirrel is dirty business!
Both of my hands looked like that, there was fur flying everywhere and of course I punctured something that made the process stink to high heaven. I did what one youtube video explained to do, but I didn't make some incision large enough where I was supposed to, and the back legs ripped right off when I pull (maybe harder than I should have). Yeah kind of gross, I know, but I definitely learned a life lesson!
We didn't eat this little fella because I just don't really know how long it had been dead, and there was a dozen people spending the holidays together who would have rejected the idea entirety! But at least I know now that I can find and prepare one more wild food without the help of the indusrtial world...
...and so the un-domestication process begins.