Top Ad Widget



No announcement yet.

What's the best way to remove shot from a game bird while you're cleaning it? I never seem to find all the pellets. A friend of

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • What's the best way to remove shot from a game bird while you're cleaning it? I never seem to find all the pellets. A friend of

    What's the best way to remove shot from a game bird while you're cleaning it? I never seem to find all the pellets. A friend of mine almost broke a tooth when he bit down on one.—L.S., Roanoke, VA

  • #2
    Whether you're cleaning a light-meat bird or a dark-meat bird, it's tough to find all the hidden pellets.

    One method is to use the point of a sharp knife to make a small "X" cut on each pellet entry hole; then probe around for the pellet with tweezers. The presence of feathers driven into the meat often indicates a pellet. Be sure to remove all the bits of feathers, since they'll impart a bitter taste.

    If you have meat that is riddled with pellets, put the meat in a pot and cook it until the meat falls off the bones. Then methodically pull it apart in small pieces to be used in a soup. —Jim Zumbo, Hunting Editor


    • #3
      I'm lucky enough to live in an area with exceptional upland bird populations - pheasants, partridge and grouse - so I have a lot of experience with removing shot. It can be tedious and it's hard to get it all, but especially if you serve bird meat to kids or folks with brittle teeth, it's worth spending time to methodically get the lead out.

      One tip an old-timer told me works well. If you're going to fillet the breast meat to make fajita meat or fried strips, take each slice and hold it up to a bright light. This is like candling eggs - the light will glow through the meat and show you any pellets, feathers or chunks of bone, which can then be easily removed.

      It's harder to do this with thigh meat. Instead, I stew this meat, which generally has lots of tendons and connective sinew. It will literally fall off the bone after about an hour of simmering and then you can go through this cooked meat and remove any pellets. If you don't think there was much shot in the meat, save the water for soup stock. But if the meat was riddled with pellets, dump out the water. It will have an off-taste, and it may also contain some diluted lead.

      Andrew McKean
      Outdoor Life - Hunting Editor


      • #4
        If you're using steel shot why not try a clean neodymium magnet. If not, try looking really hard for wound channel openinings and if that isn't your thing in addition to the other tips on here, you could try scraping the flat of a knife across the strip you cut.




        Welcome to Outdoor Life's Answers section. Here you will find hunting, fishing, and survival tips from the editors of Outdoor Life, as well as recommendations from readers like yourself.

        If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ for information on posting and navigating the forums.

        And don't forget to check out the latest reviews on guns and outdoor gear on

        Right Rail 1 Ad


        Top Active Users


        There are no top active users.

        Right Rail 2 Ad


        Latest Topics


        • ‘Twas the night before ….
          by fitch270
          the bow opener, and it’s chilli cook off night at church.

          What could possibly go wrong?!?


          09-30-2022, 06:22 PM
        • Deciding on Spot for First Day
          by wesman24
          Hello Everyone,

          I currently have a spot set up on public land that is new to me this year. I did quite a bit of scouting in the area and...
          09-29-2022, 02:15 PM
        • What now?
          by FirstBubba
          PM'ing on another blog site with a gent.
          I had lamented the fact that I have 20 gauge and 12 gauge MEC 600Jr loaders, but only shoot 16 gauge....
          09-28-2022, 05:50 PM
        • Counting down
          by fitch270
          We’ve had an early bear weekend already and squirrel season opened September 1’st but this Saturday morning is a big deal, most small game seasons...
          09-28-2022, 04:33 PM
        • POS shotgun breaks a kids heart.
          by dewman
          In short brother and I dove hunting 1/4 mile from a slough some folks are Teal hunting. Around 8:00 their shooting stops and they are coming down the...
          09-25-2022, 08:37 PM

        Right Rail 3 Ad


        Footer Ad Widget