Bird Cleaning

Miforester

Active member
When dressing your birds especially smaller birds, what or how do you remove the lungs and other internal organs. Do you use a special knife or some other tool? Or do you just leave them in the chest cavity. Thanks in advance.
 

Logical

Member
With pheasant, I cut out the spine, and when removing, everything except the lungs come out. I then run my finger under them, and they come out easily. Doves, though, I just take the breast. Unfortunately, I have not had occasion to hunt (or clean) other game birds, so I don't know how they compare to cleaning pheasant.
 

Miforester

Active member
Yeah, pheasants are not a problem but quail are and they are just to tasty not to eat the whole bird. I used to just breast doves as well.
 

Logical

Member
Have you tried cutting the spine out? I use shears on pheasant, but I don't know if they are small enough to spine (or spatchcock) a quail. Maybe I should make an effort to go quail hunting, so I can try it! :D
 

BritChaser

Well-known member
When dressing your birds especially smaller birds, what or how do you remove the lungs and other internal organs. Do you use a special knife or some other tool? Or do you just leave them in the chest cavity. Thanks in advance.

For quail, after skinning, I cut through the thin tissue along the top of each side of the breast (which opens the chest and abdominal cavity) and then hook my finger over the heart and and pull toward and through the rear. About everything comes out on first fingering; then pull hangers off the end. Final cleaning in the sink.
 
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The cutting the spine out thing is what I do too. It actually works better for quail because the scissors cut through easier. And just like a pheasant everything comes out all at once. I've been motivated this year though, the quail that I have kept for myself I've been plucking.
 

Miforester

Active member
The cutting the spine out thing is what I do too. It actually works better for quail because the scissors cut through easier. And just like a pheasant everything comes out all at once. I've been motivated this year though, the quail that I have kept for myself I've been plucking.

So are you still taking the spine out when you pluck the quail?
 
No. Only when I skin them. Be pretty tough to stay under the skin and still cut along both sides of the spine. But I bet I try it next time!
 

Prairie Drifter

Active member
When I clean quail, I do skin them, then cut them open down one side of the spine. The lungs are then easily accessed to be removed. I leave the spine in and have excellent access to that area. I suppose if you has problems, maybe a stiff toothbrush or a brass brush could be used to increase your success.
 

Miforester

Active member
Thanks Troy, had to change how one cleans birds, but may have to start cutting down spine. Tooth brush is a good suggestion as well. Hope all is well with you and your family!
 

Prairie Drifter

Active member
Tom, if you have a fertility rattle or dance, you might give me a few minutes as the girls have been getting missed. Hope you are well. Blizzard here today! 70 yesterday.
 

s.davis

Member
So when you pluck them do you get the lungs out, if so how?



I just scrape them out with my fingernail, then everything goes into a game washer for 10 minutes. If you don’t have one, it’s the best $40 you can spend for preparing birds for the table.
 

Miforester

Active member
I just scrape them out with my fingernail, then everything goes into a game washer for 10 minutes. If you don’t have one, it’s the best $40 you can spend for preparing birds for the table.

what is a game washer? Never heard of such a thing, other than myself....lol
 

s.davis

Member
That's it. Shockingly effective. When I bought it, I thought, whelp, I'm wasting $$ on another useless contraption...

And I was dead wrong.
 

david0311

Active member
That's it. Shockingly effective. When I bought it, I thought, whelp, I'm wasting $$ on another useless contraption...

And I was dead wrong.

#10 :10sign: Have used a home made one on 100’s of birds—
One of the best things since sliced bread
Will never be with out one again—from the cleaning table into the bucket —into the bags -wth a quick check-
If you have a 5 gallon bucket already can make one for less than $10 dollars -more like $5 in parts—
JMO—DC
 
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