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 Post subject: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 11:42 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 6:37 pm
Posts: 361
Location: Nassau County, NY
I'm going to dip my toe into hunting this fall. So I've been watching videos on how to dress and clean birds. Seems less complicated than I imagined but conspicuously absent is any discussion or photography of what happens to the shot.

Aren't the birds riddled with pellets and, if so, how do you find them and dig them out?

Or are the pellets usually contained to the skin/feathers?

Thanks.



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 Post subject: Re: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 12:46 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Mar 30, 2009 2:34 pm
Posts: 6809
Location: NE Oklahoma
Most of the time, especially on small birds such as dove and quail, the shot passes completely through the bird. If there are any left in them, it will be deep in the breast or at the junction of the wing and back.


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 Post subject: Re: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 1:30 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 3:08 pm
Posts: 702
Location: Middle Georgia
Some you will find while cleaning, so you can dispose of it then; others you will find while eating, so be careful when chewing. But as VJ says, there won't be much on the smaller birds.


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 Post subject: Re: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 2:45 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 06, 2012 11:20 am
Posts: 432
I do not pluck my quail/pheasant. With the skin off, you can assess the damage. I usually cut out the pellet(s) and damaged meat out of the slightly damaged birds and cube the heavier damaged birds. The best way to avoid damaged birds is to not shoot too fast if possible. You can buy some time by moving your feet into a good shooting stance. Better to do this than shoot off-balance and take two shots. Better to miss in front than to shoot it in the a$$.

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 Post subject: Re: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 3:27 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 6:54 am
Posts: 218
Location: In the marsh, waiting for the ducks
Vette Jockey wrote:
Most of the time, especially on small birds such as dove and quail, the shot passes completely through the bird. If there are any left in them, it will be deep in the breast or at the junction of the wing and back.


^^^^^ +1

For ducks an geese I probe the wound channel with a thin bladed knife and flush with cold running water. If there is a pellet left in the breast I almost always find it this way. Most pellets are either in the body cavity or are complete pass throughs. Good luck this season.


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 Post subject: Re: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 3:48 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2005 1:28 pm
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Location: Missoula, MT
Usually they are in whatever piece my wife gets. :(

Seems always to be a few, mostly in joints or under the skin. Sometime the shot will pull feathers into the meat - those are usually easy to find.

I tried a metal detector at one time to try and scan meat before grinding for sausage. It was ineffective at best.

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 Post subject: Re: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 4:18 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2008 6:20 pm
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Use larger shot - they'll be easier to see and they'll be less to pluck out of the meat

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 Post subject: Re: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:07 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2012 11:13 pm
Posts: 58
I usually try for just a head shot. I skin completely and will use a fillet knife to open the shot path to remove shot and feathers.


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 Post subject: Re: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:15 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2008 6:20 pm
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Quote:
Or are the pellets usually contained to the skin/feathers?


If that is where they were, your bird would be flying away laughing at you....... :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Game bird Dressing: Where are the pellets?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 9:21 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2008 4:12 pm
Posts: 121
Location: WA
Best use a larger size shot,
7-1/2 for quail, woodcock, & grouse, for rabbit, squirrel I use #5, and have pass thourgh wounds, with some retention and easy to find.
Have had some shot wher the pellets carried the length od a Fox squirels.




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