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  #1  
Old 12/04/07, 08:58 PM
 
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How long can a deer last before gutting it?

I was wondering if someone could tell me how long a deer, shot, not gutted yet, could last outside, in 20* and lower temps, under some snow, and laying in water, most likely frozen over now, before he is no good for the freezer? If it isn't gone bad already. He was shot yesterday at 8:30 am.

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  #2  
Old 12/04/07, 09:10 PM
 
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id say it would be good for at least a day maybe more.....lots of deer arent recovered til the next day and the temps here in ny have been really cold.

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  #3  
Old 12/04/07, 09:12 PM
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There are a lot of variables in this, not the least of which is where in the body was the animal shot?

If the stomach, intestines or bladder were hit, your window shrinks. A clean lung or heart shot helps your cause.

If you hit the body cavity and are willing to let the tenders and ribs go (assuming the body cavity has blood and or other "stuff" loose in it), the backstraps, neck and quarters should be good for quite some time given the temps you are talking about (below freezing).

I think you should be able to salvage a good bit of the animal even if it is out for days in sub-freezing weather. This assumes you didn't shoot it up and also assumes the critters haven't been gnawing on it.

Good luck!

Tim

edit: don't let my Houston location scare you...I grew up hunting in Wisconsin...

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  #4  
Old 12/04/07, 09:15 PM
 
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Thanks so much. He was shot in the neck and head by the police. He was hit by a car first in the back end and both his back legs were broken in half. He managed to drag himself to the field before the cops got there. The cop was a really bad shot, it took 4 shots to kill it.

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  #5  
Old 12/05/07, 04:46 AM
 
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Not to discourage you from trying if you want ( I hate to see an animal go to waste like this), but if the deer was hit by a car hard enough to break both back legs, most of the good meat has probably been ruined already. You might get the heart and liver and some stew meat or hamburg from the front half though.

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  #6  
Old 12/05/07, 05:05 AM
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i would forget about it. maybe the backstraps would be ok, but i bet the whole thing stinks by now. drag it out and let the animals have it.

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  #7  
Old 12/05/07, 12:10 PM
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You'll never find out what the meat looks like until you get into it. If the deer was able to crawl off and still die hard, he was just about safe when clipped in the hind legs by a front corner of a vehicle. Also, 24 hours at that low temp wouldn't even begin to start spoiling anything. I'd almost doubt if any stomach smells/tastes would transfer to the belly meat. Only reason why I'm glad that it ain't me is that a frozen deer is so hard so skin!

Martin

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  #8  
Old 12/05/07, 12:21 PM
 
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I posted the whole story in the "Wheres the deer stories" thread.
Looks like he is just gonna go to the scavengers, can't find enough people at the same time to help me move it, and get it cleaned.

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  #9  
Old 12/05/07, 04:34 PM
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Unless I hit the deer, I don't think I would go thru the trouble of picking up a road kill, lot of damage that you can't see, till you get the hide off.

Old Dodge "Power wagon, 4 X 4 w/ winch in the bed, 32" "Buck Shot" tires, 14" chain saw, veg oil for the bar oil, set of knives, makes a good "shopping" vehicle.

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  #10  
Old 12/05/07, 07:19 PM
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hunter63 is right about the damage caused by vehicles. i skinned and quartered a roadkill for a guy last year and it was busted up in both hind quarters really bad. he had 3 broken legs and a broken pelvis. the hind quarters had a whole lot of nasty, bloody meat that had to be cut away. the longer they live after injury, the worse that hemoraging will be.

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  #11  
Old 12/05/07, 07:32 PM
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Meloc & Hunter, read the rest of the story and why the "normal" carkill things DO NOT apply to the specific deer in this thread. Would quite probably be no different then shooting a deer through both legs. (Didn't PA used to have a special "cripple" season just to finish off such deer?) Kathy's deer could merely have had both of the legs snapped. The deer would have only taken a good tumble after that before crawling off. No matter how one looks at it in comparison with normal hunting, there's a lot of potential good venison for the coyotes. If there's any consolation, the meat would no doubt have been better if it were a doe.

Martin

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  #12  
Old 12/05/07, 08:17 PM
 
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The most important thing in preserving game meat is to get the hide off fast.The hide insulates the animal and after death that same retained heat starts working on the meat,not to mention the blood damaged meat from being hit by a vehicle. I think I'd have to pass on that one. Let the yotes have it,it won't go to waste.

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  #13  
Old 12/05/07, 08:35 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paquebot
Meloc & Hunter, read the rest of the story and why the "normal" carkill things DO NOT apply to the specific deer in this thread. Would quite probably be no different then shooting a deer through both legs. (Didn't PA used to have a special "cripple" season just to finish off such deer?) Kathy's deer could merely have had both of the legs snapped. The deer would have only taken a good tumble after that before crawling off. No matter how one looks at it in comparison with normal hunting, there's a lot of potential good venison for the coyotes. If there's any consolation, the meat would no doubt have been better if it were a doe.

Martin

Where the car hit the animal, there will be deep bruising. That meat will have to be thrown away. After the animal was hit, the body released chemicals into the blood stream due to stress. That will give the meat some flavor. The stomach, kidney, bladder, or intestines could've been ruptured. That'll add some flavor too. But some of the meat might still be good. You could split the skin down the backbone and take the backstraps. You don't need any help to do that. Around here, if a deer had been out for that long the buzzards would be eating on that.
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  #14  
Old 12/05/07, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paquebot
Meloc & Hunter, read the rest of the story and why the "normal" carkill things DO NOT apply to the specific deer in this thread. Would quite probably be no different then shooting a deer through both legs. (Didn't PA used to have a special "cripple" season just to finish off such deer?) Kathy's deer could merely have had both of the legs snapped. The deer would have only taken a good tumble after that before crawling off. No matter how one looks at it in comparison with normal hunting, there's a lot of potential good venison for the coyotes. If there's any consolation, the meat would no doubt have been better if it were a doe.

Martin

i was just stating that matter of factly. sorry i interjected. i'll go back to killing everything i plant here in PA.
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  #15  
Old 12/05/07, 08:55 PM
 
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kath2003
Take a sharp knife and go to where the animal is and slit the skin lengthwise at the centerline of the back and peel the skin aside and remove the back straps. Leave the rest since you have no assistance.

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  #16  
Old 12/05/07, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by alabamared
Where the car hit the animal, there will be deep bruising. That meat will have to be thrown away. After the animal was hit, the body released chemicals into the blood stream due to stress. That will give the meat some flavor. The stomach, kidney, bladder, or intestines could've been ruptured. That'll add some flavor too. But some of the meat might still be good. You could split the skin down the backbone and take the backstraps. You don't need any help to do that. Around here, if a deer had been out for that long the buzzards would be eating on that.
Read Kathy's story and why this is probably not a smack-down crash with ruptured organs and venisonburger held together by skin. Every situation is different and I've seen them all! We just had a thread where many considered it to be such a waste because of the deer along the Interstate in Wisconsin. Some are meant to stay there as scavenger food, some are wasted venison. If one took the attitude that every deer killed by a car is instantly worthless, the car is simply one of many methods used to obtain venison. In fact, there are a great many times when there's less spoilage with a car-kill deer than 7mm or .30-06!

We're going to have to remember this thread again when bow season starts next September. Deer stuck at last minute of hunting, 60º temperature, found sometime the next morning, body full of blood and other fluids and everyone will say it's just fine! Somehow, we manage to accept that.

Here we have a deer whose only proven damage is 2 broken legs and ruined neck roasts, and temperatures so low that the skin was probably frozen to the meat within a couple hours. If just one of those legs were broken, this thread would never have been started since the deer would still be warm and walking around. Personally, I'd prefer that deer over the one shot with the arrow!

Now if it were an obvious case of wondering which won, car or deer, there is no possible option. I know where there is a deer right now that pretty much destroyed the grill, hood, fender, and windshield of a car Monday night. (My son was next on the scene and called for help.) Were it not for the meat damage, that deer would still possibly be OK a month ago. 4º right now as I type and that deer is a frozen blob of frozen meat, bones, and blood held together by equally frozen skin. In that case, there would be no time limit between death and butchering since there is no salvage.

And, I did have something happen very similar to Kathy's case. Doe was alive and down but would not get up. State patrol had to shoot her and helped load it into my car. Had I been allowed to open her up immediately after being shot, I could have saved two fawn that she would have dropped that night. All we found was a bruised hip and a gravel burn on her shoulder.

Martin
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  #17  
Old 12/05/07, 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted by MELOC
i was just stating that matter of factly. sorry i interjected. i'll go back to killing everything i plant here in PA.
Meloc, you're forgiven! You know me, if one asks a specific question of me, they are going to get a specific answer specifically pertaining to the question. General questions receive general answers. It would have been easier for all had Kathy not split up all of the facts between two threads. Under those circumstances, it was difficult for any to give an accurate response to the question.

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  #18  
Old 12/05/07, 09:28 PM
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one would certainly not feel that any deer hit by a car is instantly worthless. like anything else, each situation is different. i have certainly filled my freezer a time or twenty with roadkill. the last one was last thanksgiving. it had a broken leg and back, but generally speaking, the meat was mostly ok. the back was broken right at the hip and the leg was broken below the meat. another one was crippled in my neighbors front yard at 2 am. i had to dispatch that one quietly. i had no tools or knives, so i broke it's neck. that took one and a half turns FYI and future reference. the most memorable was a deer i saw hit. the assailant car drove away and i got my cousin next door to help out. not wanting a bloody mess all through the car, i asked my cousin not to cut it's throat. sadly, he chose to use a slag hammer to dispatch the poor thing. i thought the deer was dead when i loaded it into the trunk of my 1972 skylark. well...not dead enough as it was kicking the carp outta my trunk. i think that that deer only had some bruising on the rear shanks from the broken legs, so not much meat lost there either. another one happened on my way home from work. i saw a deer flying through the air above the car in front of me. it died pretty much right away and since i was driving a pickup truck...

i have no problems eating roadkill...so long as i know it is fresh. the real turn-off is the amount of work it takes to clean bloody slime off of busted up meat. sometimes it just doesn't seem worth the time one invests.

how does this relate to the OP linked story? i have no clue, lol.

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  #19  
Old 12/06/07, 08:07 AM
 
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paquabot,
I'm sorry, I thought I was pretty clear in both stories on the amount of damage to the buck! I said "he crawled, with two broken BACK legs to the field". That would mean alive, and not road KILL!!!!!

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  #20  
Old 12/06/07, 08:15 AM
 
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Looks to me like you understood it just fine here!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paquebot
You'll never find out what the meat looks like until you get into it. If the deer was able to crawl off and still die hard, he was just about safe when clipped in the hind legs by a front corner of a vehicle. Also, 24 hours at that low temp wouldn't even begin to start spoiling anything. I'd almost doubt if any stomach smells/tastes would transfer to the belly meat. Only reason why I'm glad that it ain't me is that a frozen deer is so hard so skin!

Martin
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Old 12/06/07, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by kath2003
Looks to me like you understood it just fine here!!!
You bet I did! That's why I was the among the minority in NOT treating this as a road kill! I know exactly how such damage can happen to a deer as I've twice had deer actually clear the hood of a car. Alone in a '61 Ford station wagon when one leaped off a bank beside the road. Took several miles before the shock wore off. Second time over a '76 Ford LTD on level ground and not even seen until the deer was completely stretched over the hood and wife screaming. Same effect as the first time! A split second difference each time and there'd have been a deer with at least one broken leg.

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  #22  
Old 12/06/07, 10:01 AM
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Although I can agree with the line of thinking that has been presented, I will say the:
That I wouldn't bother with road kill unless I killed it, or saw it hit, killed or what ever.
As I'm over 50 yrs old, and am invoking the 50 yr Old Rule, I don't need a reason.
So for all the rest of you, Happy hunting!
P.S. Might find this intresting:

http://www.schoolfundstore.com/a/pet...ook/0898152003

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  #23  
Old 12/06/07, 11:03 AM
 
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Just tell me this then please??? Is the meaning of "road kill" dead on the road when you come upon it? I believe that is a whole lot different than shooting it after an injury, isn't it??

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  #24  
Old 12/06/07, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by kath2003
Just tell me this then please??? Is the meaning of "road kill" dead on the road when you come upon it? I believe that is a whole lot different than shooting it after an injury, isn't it??
Kathy, in my opinion, you are entirely correct. Road kill is dead on the spot or shortly thereafter. The deer in question here was merely another statistic in deer-car collisions. If the animal walks away from the scene of the accident, it can't be a road kill since the animal isn't dead and may well recover and lead a normal life..

I can recall at least 3 other deer which would have come under the same situation as this one and all were shot during deer hunting season. One was a doe which at one time had been hit by a vehicle and shoulder blade/scapula was busted up. She may have been down for awhile from the blow but barely had a limp when I shot her. Second was a huge 13-point buck that I shot. When butchered out, 5 or 6 ribs on one side had been broken in a straight line and healed. As long as the ends of the bones hadn't penetrated any internal organs, it was no different than if you or I had broken some ribs. Classic was a big buck that cousin shot for me 3 years ago. As soon as I began removing the skin, I knew there was something wrong by the color and texture of the meat. Discovered the reason when I get to the front legs. One had been broken at the elbow and had healed in a locked position. That deer was officially listed as 3½ years old and probably had done nothing but walk for almost his entire life. All 3 of those deer were victims of deer-vehicle collision and were able to walk away to resume a near-normal life. The only difference from this case is that all had at least 3 good legs to do it with.

Martin
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Old 12/06/07, 11:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kath2003
Just tell me this then please??? Is the meaning of "road kill" dead on the road when you come upon it? I believe that is a whole lot different than shooting it after an injury, isn't it??
IMO: ( and that is what it is, so you don't have to agree)

When an animal has been hit, doesn't matter if it is killed on impact, or shot to put it out of it's misery, the key word here is "HIT", there may be damage to the meat, (blood-shot, bruising, muddy looking meat, as well a broken organs, etc.
The fact is "You just don't know".
If you want to clean it and use the meat, as long as it looks like meat, you can remove the blood shot stuff, and so forth, go for it.
When an animal has been "shot", there may also be damage, but if you find it right away, at least YOU know the circumstances it which it died and can make you decision.
The biggest buck I have ever killed was "hit" by something before I shot him, front shoulder, was buised an dsorta green. My cutting guy had me smell the bone marrow, the smell had gone thru the whole deer, so all I got out of it was a nice mount.
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  #26  
Old 12/06/07, 01:16 PM
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Kathy, I believe that your state is much like most others in regards to salvaging such deer. Next time that you have that same chance, whatever actions you take should be done so with a homesteader's attitude but with one tiny bit of difference. If a cow goes down with a broken leg, she easily becomes hamburger. If a deer goes down with a broken leg, it easily becomes venisonburger!

Martin

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  #27  
Old 12/06/07, 05:58 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paquebot
Read Kathy's story and why this is probably not a smack-down crash with ruptured organs and venisonburger held together by skin. Every situation is different and I've seen them all! We just had a thread where many considered it to be such a waste because of the deer along the Interstate in Wisconsin. Some are meant to stay there as scavenger food, some are wasted venison. If one took the attitude that every deer killed by a car is instantly worthless, the car is simply one of many methods used to obtain venison. In fact, there are a great many times when there's less spoilage with a car-kill deer than 7mm or .30-06!

We're going to have to remember this thread again when bow season starts next September. Deer stuck at last minute of hunting, 60º temperature, found sometime the next morning, body full of blood and other fluids and everyone will say it's just fine! Somehow, we manage to accept that.

Here we have a deer whose only proven damage is 2 broken legs and ruined neck roasts, and temperatures so low that the skin was probably frozen to the meat within a couple hours. If just one of those legs were broken, this thread would never have been started since the deer would still be warm and walking around. Personally, I'd prefer that deer over the one shot with the arrow!

Now if it were an obvious case of wondering which won, car or deer, there is no possible option. I know where there is a deer right now that pretty much destroyed the grill, hood, fender, and windshield of a car Monday night. (My son was next on the scene and called for help.) Were it not for the meat damage, that deer would still possibly be OK a month ago. 4º right now as I type and that deer is a frozen blob of frozen meat, bones, and blood held together by equally frozen skin. In that case, there would be no time limit between death and butchering since there is no salvage.

And, I did have something happen very similar to Kathy's case. Doe was alive and down but would not get up. State patrol had to shoot her and helped load it into my car. Had I been allowed to open her up immediately after being shot, I could have saved two fawn that she would have dropped that night. All we found was a bruised hip and a gravel burn on her shoulder.

Martin

Actually my friend, I did read the story. I didn't say not to eat the deer. But the back legs are broken. That's most of the meat likely ruined. The bladder and anus are in that location. If they are ruptured more meat will most likely be contaminated. It takes an animal that is not gutted quite a while to cool down. If I needed the meat I would get it. I've eaten roadkill deer before.
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  #28  
Old 12/06/07, 06:23 PM
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Alabamared, unless we're all to be considered as buzzards, you didn't say that we could eat it, either!

Almost everyone here is claiming to know where that deer was injured and we've heard everywhere from front to back. We only know that it had 2 broken legs. There's a lot of leg between the anus and bladder of both a deer and myself. Just from ankle to knee is a long stretch. If a deer is smacked to where the anus and bladder are affected, the damage is sufficient so that it usually doesn't get up. It will only crawl a little ways and natural pain killers kick in and the deer will go into shock. Merely breaking or shooting off a leg isn't enough to cause that.

Again, all of the evidence should have told us one thing. Were it only one leg that was affected, the deer would more than likely still be alive.

And since the title of this thread was actually in the form of a question, the answer is about 10,000 years, give or take a few centuries. That is reliant upon the creature never thawing out as in the case of the extinct mammoths found frozen in Siberia.

Martin

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Old 12/06/07, 06:47 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paquebot
Alabamared, unless we're all to be considered as buzzards, you didn't say that we could eat it, either!

Almost everyone here is claiming to know where that deer was injured and we've heard everywhere from front to back. We only know that it had 2 broken legs. There's a lot of leg between the anus and bladder of both a deer and myself. Just from ankle to knee is a long stretch. If a deer is smacked to where the anus and bladder are affected, the damage is sufficient so that it usually doesn't get up. It will only crawl a little ways and natural pain killers kick in and the deer will go into shock. Merely breaking or shooting off a leg isn't enough to cause that.

Again, all of the evidence should have told us one thing. Were it only one leg that was affected, the deer would more than likely still be alive.

And since the title of this thread was actually in the form of a question, the answer is about 10,000 years, give or take a few centuries. That is reliant upon the creature never thawing out as in the case of the extinct mammoths found frozen in Siberia.

Martin

I don't know why you want to do all this yelling. Maybe you should go back and read my post. I didn't say not to eat it, I didn't say to eat it. I merely said to check it out.
You are correct in that we only know that it had two broken legs. We also don't know where those legs were broken. Unless you are the original poster using different names.
The reference about buzzards was for my neck of the woods. Sorry you misread that.
I guess I misunderstood the OP's question. I thought she wanted to eat the meat. At 20 degrees it would last forever. It would just taste like sh1t. Actually there is zero leg between the anus and bladder.
PM me if ya wanna holla!
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  #30  
Old 12/06/07, 07:21 PM
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Nobody's yelling! Everyone but me was trying to tell Kathy that there was something wrong with that deer in addition to what she told us. And if she relied on all of the replies here to make a decision, coyotes would have made the decision easier.

Consider the facts using anatomy. Damage to anus and bladder would involve pelvic bone. Deer don't move from that damage. From pelvic to hooves are femur, tibia, and metatarsus. Femur and pelvic damage are generally combined. Break the femurs and again the deer ain't going anywhere. In fact, few people would consider the femur as part of the leg but it's in there! Moving down is the tibia which many would call upper leg despite it not corresponding to our legs. That's equal to our lower leg. That would be an ugly and bloody break due to the amount of muscle and flesh involved. (That's not mentioned by Kathy.) What most would call a deer's leg is the metatarsus which would be our foot bone but can be almost 2' long on a big deer. It's primarily bone and skin with its only purpose being to support the hooves. Snap one off and the deer would barely feel it and continue along on 3 legs. If the breaks were the metatarsus bones, there'd be no meat damage and virtually no loss of blood but would immobilize a deer after a short distance due to natural reaction of trying to run and nothing happening. With the information supplied by the only person who saw the deer, that's the leg bones which we should assume are affected and with all but a few possible road burns and incidental bruises from the initial tumble. Other than that, there is absolutely no evidence that anything but good venison is frozen out there. In fact, the laws which permit the salvage of deer road kills were set up partly so that such venison IS salvaged rather than dumped in a landfill.

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