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Are porcupines edible?

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  • Are porcupines edible?

    Here is a young leopard checking out a possible meal:

    https://youtu.be/4hhVL_O5F6Y


  • #2
    I have eaten North American porcupine and it's pretty bad. Definitely a distinctive turpentine flavour to the meat. Back in 1975 we had an idiot cook at the surveying camp who surprised us with a meal one night. Ugh! Though he had his own camper, he had an uncomfortable habit of lurking in the trees around the outhouse. Creepy. Then the week after the porcupine fiasco he threw a cooler full of steaks onto the coals of a bonfire. His method of barbecue. When our crew boss came in that night he almost delimbed the guy. We bound and gagged the cook, threw him in the back of his camper bus, and drove it to town. In no uncertain terms he was told to get out of the country. The next guy sent up was a fat greasy filthy Russian who couldn't speak a word of Engish. Only knew how to cook pancakes and even screwed that up. An opportunity presented to get on a fire crew and I jumped on it. At that point C-rations on a fire line sounded pretty good. And I was paid better for the inconvenience.
    Last edited by Ontario Honker Hunter; 06-15-2020, 10:52 AM.

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    • #3
      I was always told to look for them in an survival situation. They're slow and easy to club.

      While I've never had one I was told to burn the quills and the hair off. Apparently the meat tastes like the type of tree that they've been eating. Again, never had it myself, but the turpentine flavor OH described (as I've been told) means it's been living in or chewing on pine trees.

      I guess if they've been living in hardwoods they taste better, Also, if you're really careful you can skin them out, but I've never tried it.

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      • #4
        Here's another porcupine story to liven this site up with something besides hopeless excuses for Donald Trump's nuttiness.

        Back in '85 I had just started teaching at a small high school in Northern Idaho. The librarian was a prudish fella from Champaign, Illinois. Ray was rather prim with his wire rimmed glasses and pencil mustache. We were the only bachelors at the school and I was anxious to " get back in circulation" after my recent divorce so Ray offered to show me a few watering holes in Coeur d'Alene, about a fifty minute drive. We were quite the mismatched pair: a starchy little bookworm from the big eastern city and a rough wrestling coach from rural Montana. Turns out Ray couldn't hold his beer very well and passed out as I was driving back in the wee hours after closing time. As my car rounded a corner a huge porky came into the headlights on the opposite shoulder. I stopped, rolled down the window, and retrieved my .357 from under the seat (Northern Idaho was valuable white pine country and destructive porcupines were simply shot on sight back in those days). BOOM! Ray woke with such a jump he hit his head on the ceiling of my '79 Cutlass. I holstered the gun and tucked it back under the seat. Off we went. Ray sat there silently, eyes straight ahead and big as saucers. Finally after a while he meekly asked "Umm ... what just happened back there?" Very casually I replied, "Just some gawdam hippy hitch hiker." Ray gulped so hard his Adam's apple almost hit his chin. I laughed and told him what really happened. "Why did you do that if you're not going to eat it." Gave me pause to reflect. And I never shot another one.
        Last edited by Ontario Honker Hunter; 06-15-2020, 10:53 AM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Ontario Honker Hunter View Post
          Here's another porcupine story to liven this site up with something besides hopeless excuses for Donald Trump's nuttiness.

          Back in '85 I had just started teaching at a small high school in Northern Idaho. The librarian was a prudish fella from Champaign, Illinois. Ray was rather prim with his wire rimmed glasses and pencil mustache. We were the only bachelors at the school and I was anxious to " get back in circulation" after my recent divorce so Ray offered to show me a few watering holes in Coeur d'Alene, about a fifty minute drive. We were quite the mismatched pair: a starchy little bookworm from the big eastern city and a rough wrestling coach from rural Montana. Turns out Ray couldn't hold his beer very well and passed out as I was driving back in the wee hours after closing time. As my car rounded a corner a huge porky came into the headlights on the opposite shoulder. I stopped, rolled down the window, and retrieved my .357 from under the seat (Northern Idaho was valuable white pine country and destructive porcupines were simply shot on sight back in those days). BOOM! Ray woke with such a jump he hit his head on the ceiling of my '79 Cutlass. I holstered the gun and tucked it back under the seat. Off we went. Ray sat there silently, eyes straight ahead and big as saucers. Finally after a while he meekly asked "Umm ... what just happened back there?" Very casually I replied, "Just some gawdam hippy hitch hiker." Ray gulped so hard his Adam's apple almost hit his chin. I laughed and told him what really happened. "Why did you do that if you're not going to eat it." Gave me pause to reflect. And I never shot another one.
          Another "vermin" story.
          Armadillos, other than carry the virus that causes leprosy, are relatively harmless......EXCEPT.... their infernal holes!!!
          A hole about the size of a bowling ball and destroyed shrubs and gardens.
          I kill every one I can draw a bead on....and "NO!", I don't eat them!

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          • #6
            I watch Dr. Pol on Nat Geo. and he gets the dogs in with a mouth full of quills. Sometimes the same dog with a few encounters. You would think they would learn.

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