My survival buddy Jeremy, who goes by One Wildcrafter on YouTube, and I, may be one of the few people who have ever totally consumed skunk, and I mean, not just one bite, but the whole animal! And while we’ve only just eaten the one, we may be considered experts because near as I can tell, there is no other living proof documented of the total edibility of skunk, and how to prepare it for a meal, anywhere! While some historical records from the 1800’s mention skunk in cursory manner, none go into enough detail to properly perform the skinning operation successfully.
So buckle up, I’m about to show you how to bring a skunk to the table! First you may wonder why anyone would bother with a skunk, and it’s a fair question. The simplest answer that I can provide is that in an SHTF scenario, skunk might be one of those few species that remains untargeted, leaving those of us with iron stomachs free reign. In fact, skunks have very few natural predators, and for good reason – they are generally considered unpalatable to anyone unskilled and patient enough to correctly wield a sharp implement to diffuse natures original scent bomb.
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First you need to know how to trap them. Thankfully, that’s the easy part. My go to for trapping live animals is peanut butter – that will get you anything from a raccoon (if you are lucky) to a possum. But if you really want a skunk, just try your luck again, eventually you’ll get one!
Approach the trap with care and pick the critter off with a .22 LR and be done with it. If you agitated the skunk, it may spray and render the operation a failure. You really don’t want them to spray. If you get a docile member of the species, you can sometimes approach with a blanket held in front to conceal your silhouette, move slowly, and cover for transportation. After the animal is dispatched, clean it well. Wash with warm soapy water with rubber gloves, paying attention to the crevices and anal region.
Next, pat and hang the animal to dry by both hind legs. With your knife, work as any other animal, cutting up the legs and ringing the feet. Now comes the tricky part. You’ll want to free to entire gut system – the whole “train.” Rather than sever the tube, work between the anal canal and the pelvis (not in the canal – the outside area) freeing the tract of connective so that it slips in and out easily within the pelvis. Use your finger for this only.
When the connective tissue is free, you can then tie the intestines using string in two places and cut in between so that no liquid is spilled (this is much easier to demonstrate rather than explain so be sure to watch the accompanying video). Be careful not to play around with any of the tissues around the anus anymore than necessary as spilled liquid will end up on the meat giving it that distasteful flavor we associate with skunk – burnt tire and garlic. You’ll get immediate feedback on this as the more you move the tissues, the more smell is released.
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Once you have the anal glands removed, you can work the rest of the skin off easily as any other animal. You may think you are home free now, but there’s more. Carefully inspect for any fat tissues that may conceal other scent glands. We found some in the pits of the legs, around the neck and various other locations. These look like small light colored beans. Remove all of these or you may end up with more off flavors. If you’ve deglanded raccoon before, you know how to do this already.
In the final product, we noticed only a very minor hint of skunk smell with most of the flavor simply sweet meat. I prefer cooking as a stew since this is a lean meat. If you’ve done things correctly, you need no special methods of preparation, season to taste and enjoy!
Watch Video: How To Clean and Eat Skunk – The Only Living Proof of Skunk Edibility