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How long to rot?

  1. Mar 15, 2005 #1

    Ivan Seeking

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    Yikes! I discovered a dead deer on the property today. The deer around here have a real problem with a lethal "hair loss disease", and boy oh boy, this one was in really bad shape. It reminds of the sarcoptic mange episodes in the south last year [discussed in the Biology forum].

    So here's the thing. Its pretty ripe and I'm probably going to lose my lunch if I have to deal with it. On the other hand, I can't let it lay around and rot all summer. How long will it take for this to decay to a tolerable state. Since its a bit out of sight, out of mind, is it reasonable to leave it rot? I have never had such a large animal to deal with. Will it take weeks, or months, to take care of itself?
     
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  3. Mar 15, 2005 #2

    SOS2008

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    Whoa--This sounds like a bigger problem than what to do with the carcass. According to information on this site http://www.naturalcanine.com/html/mange.html, it sounds like the deer should be given a proper diet and herb supplements (whatcha got growin' round there?), as well as a shampoo and/or chemical dip--maybe Rogain or something.

    Are you down wind? Any dogs or wild animals to help finish things up? Otherwise it may be time to get the shovel--maybe the chain saw too... :yuck:
     
  4. Mar 16, 2005 #3

    Moonbear

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    I'm not sure how long it will take to rot, that will depend a bit on the insects around and temperature as well as what other scavengers (skunks?) will be munching on it. But, if it's out of the way, it shouldn't take too long to get to a point where it stops smelling bad. You won't still be smelling it by summer, if that's what you're worried about. As soon as the last frost passes, fly season will start and they'll take care of anything left by then.

    Reminds me of when we used to do spring field trips for the bio labs when I was TA. One year, there was a dead deer along the path of the field trip through the woods. Since most of the animals run and hide after the first class tromps through the path, the dead deer was considered a bonus by the course coordinator and he even wrote paragraph for us to add to our "tour" to include the dead deer! I don't think the students walking past it thought it was such a bonus, though it did help keep them on the path there! :biggrin:
     
  5. Mar 16, 2005 #4

    Ivan Seeking

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    Oh good. It's extremely warm and the bugs and critters are out in force. I really didn't want to bury this thing. The big problem is that I broke my toe, and really screwed up my digging foot, two weeks ago, and am not able to put on a shoe yet.
     
  6. Mar 16, 2005 #5
    If it really bothers you, buy a bag of lyme and cover the beastie with it. It will ummm hasten the prosess :frown:
     
  7. Mar 16, 2005 #6

    Moonbear

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    Sorry to hear about your toe. OUCH!

    You could of course do a forensic study on how long it takes to decay and what insects are found on various days of decay. :tongue2:
     
  8. Mar 16, 2005 #7

    Ivan Seeking

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    Okay. I'll post pics.
     
  9. Mar 16, 2005 #8

    Math Is Hard

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    do you want my recipe for venison jerky, Ivan?
     
  10. Mar 16, 2005 #9

    Ivan Seeking

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    Oh boy! Diseased deer jerky. Ummmmm.

    Does that go with red or white wine?
     
  11. Mar 16, 2005 #10

    Math Is Hard

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    LOL! :rofl:
    I'm not sure, but my Roadkill Cookbook might have some suggestions. When I was growing up in Alabama, we ate far worse things than that.
     
  12. Mar 16, 2005 #11

    Moonbear

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    :uhh: No thanks. I know what dead deer look like. And maggots always give me the creeps. Dead things shouldn't move the way they do when infested with maggots. :yuck:
     
  13. Mar 16, 2005 #12

    Moonbear

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    Oh, here's something totally gross. When I was out shopping a few weeks ago at this huge international market near here, I can't recall what section I was in (there doesn't seem to be an ethnic group missed in that place...great for finding obscure ingredients), but there was a can of chocolate-covered maggots! On purpose, people apparently eat them. :yuck: :yuck: :yuck: I scurried away from that aisle pretty quickly!
     
  14. Mar 16, 2005 #13

    Math Is Hard

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    wow! That's really vile. :yuck: Sounds like one of those weird French delicacies.
     
  15. Mar 16, 2005 #14

    honestrosewater

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    This probably won't be pretty because I'd have trouble making it pretty even if I wasn't so tired, but... I'm sure Moonbear knows much much more about biology than I do, but maggots used to creep me out also- not insects in general though- anyway, I saw a show where they were using maggots to treat wounds that were infected and wouldn't heal (or something like that). They put the maggots on the wound and cover it with a bandage and the maggots just go to town. And it works. So this totally creeped me out until they said the maggots don't eat live tissue. And that was it. Maggots don't creep me out anymore. Does that not help?
     
  16. Mar 16, 2005 #15

    Evo

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    Ivan, are you not shampooing your deer regularly?

    (sorry to hear about your toe, which one?)
     
  17. Mar 16, 2005 #16
    the top one
     
  18. Mar 16, 2005 #17

    Your digging foot?
    :confused:
     
  19. Mar 16, 2005 #18

    Astronuc

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    I think he means the foot he would use to force the shovel blade into the ground. One usually needs a shoe, unless one is conditioned with hard soles on the feet.

    I think a large carcass takes a few weeks in the summer, but perhaps a month or more in winter, at least that has been my experience with midsize to large animals. We have a fair amount of road kill (deer included) in our area.
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2005
  20. Mar 16, 2005 #19
    Around here usualy the road kill lasts for a few weeks... At most 2 months... That is unless it snows.... In wich case the snow plow takes care of it for us :yuck:
     
  21. Mar 16, 2005 #20
    Couldn't you just go to a fishing place, get some 'bait' live maggots, and leave them on the deer?
     
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