The call of the wild … it’s all about the game.

Greetings Carnivores,

When I was a young lad, I LOVED spending time hunting and fishing with my Dad. He was an avid outdoorsman and as such, instilled his great love and respect for the wilderness in me. Back then I was too young to carry a gun of my own, so I would tag along on those cold, early mornings helping him set out the decoys and sitting for hours, waiting and watching. Ducks, Geese, Pheasants, Grouse, Rabbits, Deer, Moose, Caribou and Bear. We never hunted for trophies, and always used every bit of what we harvested. My favourite trips involved heading out to the wilderness for a week or more. I was always the youngest one in camp and I felt SO privileged to be included in this Grown-up world.

My Dad is gone now, and so are all the other Old timers that gathered every year at the hunting camp up north. The strange part now is, I’m the oldest one in camp, all the other Sons are younger than me. Looking back at those early years, I’m pretty sure all those experiences (and the salty language) helped to mold me into the person I am today, with a deep love and respect for the out-of-doors, and all things wild.

Oh, and a full repertoire of swear words and bad jokes too.

I know there are a lot of people who don’t agree with hunting but the simple truth is, many of these species have no natural predators and without the intervention of a controlled hunting season, a lot of these animals would over populate their territories. The Ministry of Natural Resources closely maintains population information on all game animals and accordingly, issues licences for the ‘culling’ of them annually.

The season for hunting is short, so the ‘window’ for filling your freezer is very limited. A lot of folks especially in the far North, rely on this window to stock up for the long Winter. Keep in mind if you don’t eviscerate and cut the game yourself, you must source out an abattoir or butcher who is federally inspected and remember, it’s illegal to sell “hunted’ meat here in the Province of Ontario. I’m sure similar restrictions apply for the rest of the country, and it’s easy to check for yourselves on the internet.

Recently, the ‘ol  Water cooler was the source of yet another frequently discussed theme, and a topic I get asked about quite a bit. My friend brought up a blog post I wrote back in the Fall regarding Wild game (if you missed it, you can check it out here “It’s that time of the year… Wild Moose”) and the question was, … now that the hunting season is over, where do you find Wild Game?

For those of you who don’t hunt or rely on Mother Nature to help you fill your larder, there are LOTS of resources available to you to satisfy your “Meat tooth”. The ‘net’ is a treasure trove of information on where to find, buy, prepare and cook everything from Boar to Kangaroo (which, incidentally I had the chance to taste for myself last week … delicious!!). You’ll find sustainably produced, ethically treated, antibiotic and hormone free, farm raised game choices and, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.

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Until next time Carnivores, stay hungry and as usual, please follow my posts on Twitter @DougieDee and like and share them on Facebook