Ask The Biologist

Handle With Care

Handle With Care

By Bob Humphrey

Despite the smell, tarsal glands should not affect meat.

QUESTION: Someone told me I should cut off the tarsal glands from my buck before I hang it or it will taint the meat. Is that true?

ANSWER: No. Although the odor can be quite strong, especially during the rut, tarsal glands are external and won’t come in contact with the meat unless the carcass is mishandled.

Also, they stop producing the fatty acids that contribute to that odor as soon as the deer dies.

That said, you may want to remove them anyway. Then you can hang them on your pack as a cover scent, or on a limb as an attractant.

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Copyright 2021 by Buckmasters, Ltd.

Copyright 2020 by Buckmasters, Ltd