• Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

squirrel for dinner

 
paul wheaton
master steward
Pie
Posts: 19833
Location: missoula, montana (zone 4)
bee chicken hugelkultur trees wofati woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Sometime in the next few weeks I want to try this. 

I am currently visiting a friend and guns would not be allowed here.  So the first step would be to somehow catch the squirrel. 

Since a gun is out, then it must be a trap.  I think if I took a big garbage can and put four inches of styrofoam peanuts in the bottom, then the squirrel wouldn't be able to jump out.  And then a little peanut butter on the side as bait.

A stick with a hole in the end could be used as a sort of lasso ...  and then a hatchet to finish the job?

Skinning - I've never skinned anything so small.  Anybody skinned anything this small?

And then cooking ...  uh ....  anybody have a recipe?

 
Joel Hollingsworth
pollinator
Posts: 2103
Location: Oakland, CA
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I seem to recall The Joy of Cooking having recipes like this.  I know for certain it has rabbit and opossum.
 
rose macaskie
Posts: 2134
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
    You'd like my cousins they like eating strange things and two of them one who died in a car accident made a living out of organic vegetables.
      I whatched a french preson kill and skin a rabbit while we drew out of a camping sight, he held it up by the back legs ran his hand down its back so it smacked against its skull and i don't remember the rest, ow,  i have on another occasion seen a rabbit being skinned, skining things is like taking off a coat.
      Loved the chicken page, so funny all the hens all over the place, animals are really nice when they are like that, all over the place. Loved all the cages, they seemed funny too, such a wealth of cages, the repressed sculptor again ¡eh! what a energetic person you are.
    How did you get all those hens so comfortabley out of control. My grandmother had some house hens, she had them to provide eggs for the house, that where loose as well as a lot of henhouse hens in hen houses, at one point for some years. You could tell the system was ugly they never wanted us children in the hen houses.
    Her lose hens did not run riot, they were very staid. They kept to the parts of the ground they were meant  to keep to, when i see your fotos i want to know how she did it. I suppose you did not cut a few feathers,, of their wing, back a bit, about three feathers if i remember right,  you do it on one side only, i suppose it unbalances them, so yours flew a bit. I suppose you have to remember to repeat the action every so often in case the part cut feathers have fallen out and grown back again. I tend to let animals get all over the place and to pop were they want and then i find they are too much for me. If you cut the feather too low it bleads a bit, there is blood in the lower part of the shaft of the feather  you cut the feathers above that part. they call it cutting the wing i think but its only cutting of two thirds of their feathers.
      As i said before somewhere you can cook up potatoe peelings and the leaves you clean of vegetables etc and mash then for the hens.
      The neighbor of my brothers in laws, in Gredos had chickens who ate what they wanted in my brother in laws garden and that really put paid to any ground plants.
      My grandmothers hens only wandered around in the yard the area between the house and the barns and milking parlour, stables and pig house and the orchard and such, they could have gone to the smart front of the house but did not, they did not eat the patches of lawn in the yard, there were two islands of lawn amoung th ecobbles. Maybe the long grass in the orchard was more appetising but it was not very big no bigger thsan my brother inlaws garden and they did not destroy all the grass in it or the flowers in a pot in the stable yard, she must have been a witch.  Still she had spent all her life in the country with animals she probably had a trick or two.
    I can pluck and prepare game, phesants and such but i have never skinned an animal. agri rose macaskie.
 
Jennifer Smith
Posts: 714
Location: Zone 5
1
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
paul wheaton wrote:

A stick with a hole in the end could be used as a sort of lasso ... and then a hatchet to finish the job?



You are too funny.  But as no one has given any ideas here is mine.  My fave way to have a dead squirrel is in gravey over biscuits.  Also looked and founf this...
cook 001.jpg
[Thumbnail for cook 001.jpg]
 
Jocelyn Campbell
steward
Pie
Posts: 3732
Location: Missoula, MT
265
books food preservation forest garden hugelkultur toxin-ectomy
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Dude, how could you forget your own post about squirrel melts??   

The video might not show an alternative to shooting or how to skin, but it is a recipe, even if "perky." And, someone else mentioned squirrel stew in that thread.
 
paul wheaton
master steward
Pie
Posts: 19833
Location: missoula, montana (zone 4)
bee chicken hugelkultur trees wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
(rose, if you like I can move your post to the thread on chicken stuff)

Dude, how could you forget your own post about squirrel melts??


Well, they killed the squirrel with a shotgun.  I don't really want to do that.  I'm kinda hoping that somebody who knows far more about this will say "that's too much work.  All you need to do is ______ and then ______ and make sure you ______"

 
Leah Sattler
Posts: 2603
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
they won't allow any fire arms? even an air rifle? being shot would be alot less traumatic then being caught. slingshot maybe?
 
Jennifer Smith
Posts: 714
Location: Zone 5
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
A slingshot, aka wrist rockets, are great tools with some proficiency.  I had some neighbors who used to hunt wild turkey with them, they were 11 and 12 year old boys and could hit them in the head and kill them (or maybe stunned them and twisted their necks, really can't say for sure).  I just know they had a big place with woods and crop fields so had turkey often.
 
Leah Sattler
Posts: 2603
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
sling shot or a wrist rocket would take lots of practice but would be alot better in the long run. It would really be a great skill to have. never have to buy ammo.
 
paul wheaton
master steward
Pie
Posts: 19833
Location: missoula, montana (zone 4)
bee chicken hugelkultur trees wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My friend lives in the big city.  I think even wrist rockets are not okay. 

So I'm thinking of some form of home-made trap.
 
jeremiah bailey
Posts: 343
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
What about 2 dogs? My parents have two chocolate lab/chow mutts who love hunting squirrels. They don't eat them. They just hunt them, kill them, and parade around with them in their mouths until they're tired or the squirrel is taken away. It may not be the fastest way, but it is cheap, lazy, and quite entertaining. One dog might be sufficient. But two is definitely very entertaining.
 
                                
Posts: 24
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Maybe you could try soaking some bread and peanut butter in alcohol and gather them up as they start falling out of the trees dead drunk. Might improve the flavour of the meat. YUmmm...brandy tree rat.

Thomas
 
Leah Sattler
Posts: 2603
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
ha ha ha. yeah get em drunk first!  hmmmm city hunting. anything that is quiet and doesn't travel far seems acceptable. gee. my dad and brother used to practice with a bow in the front yard in the city. of course that was some years ago. people use air rifles on campuses and such to control squirrel populations.
 
                                            
Posts: 10
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My dad cooks sqirrell. He coats the squirrel in flour, seasons with salt and pepper, then he browns in in a skillet with some shortening. After the squirrel in browned, he puts it in the dutch oven and puts water in a can in the middle of the dutch oven. A small can like from a can of mushrooms or one of those small mandrian orange cans.
Then he put the lid on the dutch oven, puts it in the conventional oven, bakes for an hour. I am not sure of the heat temperature. I could ask though.

                      Belle
 
                          
Posts: 250
Location: Marrakai Northern Territory Australia
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

i would imagine skinning a sqirrell would be similar to a rabbit, slitt between rear legs and pull skin towards head.
or theres the cheats way - air compressor with blower nozzle small slit insert nozzle just under skin and blow up like a ballon, then slit between rear legs and lift out carcus
 
Gwen Lynn
Posts: 736
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
The cheats way sounds like fun! Squirrel balloons! All those years, growing up with an air compressor in my dad's garage...and I missed out on making squirrel balloons. Dang it!
 
                          
Posts: 250
Location: Marrakai Northern Territory Australia
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

just a lazy way to seperate flesh from skin, iv'e used it on sheep, cattle, rabbits and kangaroo
 
Ardilla Esch
Posts: 198
Location: Northern New Mexico, Zone 5b
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
O.K. this is an old thread but it made me laugh and no one really answered the skinning question.

First, to skin a squirrel - cut a slit about 1 to 2 in. long in the skin in the middle of the back (cross-wise not lenghth-wise).  Stick your index and middle fingers of one hand in one side of the slit.  Then stick the index and middle fingers of your other hand in the other side of the slit.  Now, pull the skin apart.  The slit will rip further and the skin will get pulled inside out over the hind legs/tail and shoulders/head.

Now, cut out the hind legs and the lower back.  These pieces have the most meat.  Nothing else on the critter is worth cooking and eating IMO.

Now how to kill without shooting - use a live trap then dunk the whole trap in a bin of water and drown it.  It is insane to try to wrestle a live squirrel like you suggested! 

BTW My alias (Ardilla) means squirrel in Spanish.  I no longer eat them, just appreciate them and occaisionally behave like one...
 
Jordan Lowery
pollinator
Posts: 1528
Location: zone 7
12
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
i didnt read the full thread yet, but there is a real easy way to catch squirrels ( dont ask me why i know, ive never eaten one) but squirrels are lazy creatures when it comes to climbing, if there is an easy route, they take it. well you get a stick and prop it up against a tree as to create an easy path for the squirrel( pick a popular tree or make a few). along that stick you put multiple small nooses( like what they hang people with) on the top side, chances are the squirrel will run its head through the loop. then it will freak out and fall to the underside and hang itself. then you have dinner.
 
Joel Hollingsworth
pollinator
Posts: 2103
Location: Oakland, CA
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ardilla wrote:use a live trap then dunk the whole trap in a bin of water and drown it. 


A friend of mine recently suggested a similar method, but instead of a bin of water, he used a bin of nitrogen gas.

In his case, he stole a few tablespoons of liquid nitrogen from work, and let them evaporate to smother the squirrel. A lot more humane than drowning, and possibly more sanitary.
 
Ardilla Esch
Posts: 198
Location: Northern New Mexico, Zone 5b
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
By that line of thinking, you could get some dry ice from the grocery store and use carbon dioxide.
 
Ken Peavey
steward
Posts: 2523
Location: FL
88
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Get moose, Get squirrel...

For bait, use thin string to hang a photo of a really good looking female squirrel over a barrel of ice.  All the guy squirrels will come by to take a look, ask her out.  They climb down the string, string breaks, they land on the ice getting knocked out.  They are much easier to handle this way.  You reset the photo, gather up the comatose squirrels to enjoy for dinner or save for later.

For a more tender squirrel, putting it down gently will keep the adrenaline levels down.  A squirrel housed in a container enables this method.  A suitable gas would be dry ice or nitrogen, but the cost factor becomes an issue.  Removing the oxygen in a closed container is effective and can be done with candles.  The squirrel will pass out when the O2 gets to about 18%.  Give it a few minutes for any adrenaline to break down, then dispatch the animal with a method suitable to your liking.


 
Jacob Solt
Posts: 7
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I would not think myself any kind of expert on the topic but I do have some experience with squirrels. I mostly use traps as hitting them even with a firearm wouldn't be efficient, when I have traps that are working for me 24/7 (well actually half that time, because the squirrels sleep at night). I have found that tube-style traps are the easiest trap to catch squirrels with [Picture of a tube style trap at commercial website]; a 110 conibear will get the job done too, but you have to know a little bit more about how to set it up and if your set the trap using bad safety techniques, you could break a finger or thumb, so I wouldn't recommend one of those to anyone who doesn't already know what they are doing. Nice thing about these traps though, is the squirrel is dispatched quick; I have a tendency to think that a broken neck that you never saw coming, would be a bit less traumatic than the stress of a drowning, but I wouldn't want to tangle with an ornery squirrel trapped in a cage with a club neither.

I just use peanut butter on the trap-pan and I will generally put four traps out at a time and the first day, I'll generally get about four to eight squirrels; that number drops a bit on the second day and still more as time wears on. As you start cleaning out the local population, the surplus squirrels from the surrounding areas start to fill in, so you'll get a lag after a week or two as the local population plummets but it'll pick back up after the third or fourth week.

If it's late-fall or winter, I will skin them out like I would any fur-bearing animal; while the carcass hangs upside-down suspended from a gambrel or a rope, I cut around each foot and cut down each hind-leg, cutting the anus away from the tail and cutting the genitals away from the belly-hide and then pull the skin down like taking off a sock, gently using the knife to cut away the connective tissue between the meat and the skin.

If the fur isn't prime and you don't want the leather, then the technique recommended by Ardilla Esch, is a good one; this sounds very similar: Skinning a Squirrel

If I have lots of fresh squirrel might use the legs as stew-meat in a slow-cooker or pressure-cooker; usually, I turn it into dog food, minus the GI tract which gets composted. You can also make a pretty convincing Buffalo-style squirrel wings with the legs; alternatively, you can do a grilled squirrel teriyaki. The trouble is, the meat to bones ratio is a bit towards the, "this is a lot of work to remove the meat from the bones, compared to how much meat I'm getting" kinda thing.

Given my druthers, I'd much prefer woodchuck or even beaver.

I realize that this is an old thread but I was reading the responses and I was moved to contribute.

Best Regards!
 
Miles Flansburg
steward
Posts: 3662
Location: Zones 2-4 Wyoming and 4-5 Colorado
134
bee books forest garden fungi greening the desert hugelkultur
 
Guarren cito
Posts: 79
Location: Zone 4A
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
That is the only way to clean squirrels!!!

When I go that's what I'll do.
 
This parrot is no more. It has ceased to be. Now it's a tiny ad:

Infect brains with permaculture! Give out gobs of the permaculture playing cards
richsoil.com/cards


  • Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic